Smoking on the Beach in Thailand is Now Fined with USD 3000
Smokers who violate the smoking ban on 20 of Thailand's most popular tourist beaches will be fined USD 3,000 or will be imprisoned for up to one year, reports bgnes.
The ban, which comes into force in November, follows the cleaning of nearly 140,000 cigarette buds from an area of 2.5 kilometers from the famous Patong Beach on Phuket Island.
The introduction of the ban will coincide with the peak tourist season of Thailand and will be applied to attracting places for tourists including Krabi, Koh Samui, Pattaya, Phuket and Fang Nga.
"These beaches are among the most beautiful in Southeast Asia, and the goal is to be preserved in this way," says a statement on the news of the head of tourism in the country, Jutasak Supaspor. Smokers will have to use certain areas, he added.
Those caught smoking on the beach can be punished with a prison or a fine of 100,000 baht (USD 3018). The fine is the latest effort to strengthen the Thai tourism industry. The sector is a vital pillar of the Thai economy attracting more than 30 million tourists a year. But the huge number of arrivals also threatens to damage some of the idyllic beaches of the country with waste harmful to local ecosystems.
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