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Japanese street smoking bans: a Japan Tobacco foil to prevent clean indoor air policy?
  1. Simon Chapman
  1. Correspondence to Professor Simon Chapman, University of Sydney School of Public Health Edward Ford Building A27 University of Sydney NSW 2006 Sydney, Australia; sc{at}

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A recent visit to Japan had me wondering if I had not landed in a tobacco control topsy-turvy land. In restaurants and bars in Tokyo, people smoked at will. But on the streets in several local government areas of Tokyo, many signs on footpaths in both Japanese and English (fig 1) declared that smoking on the street was banned. Smoking is also prohibited at taxi ranks and inside taxis (fig 2), but smokers can gather in common signed smoking areas in the street (fig 3) and extinguish their …

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  • Competing interests None.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.