Spanish smokers are facing tighter curbs on tobacco use from January. The changes could cause ructions in a nation where a third of the population is said to light up every day.
Parliament has approved legislation aimed at cutting smoking in public places.Health Minister Elena Salgado is delighted and confident the country is behind the move.
She hopes the new law will reduce smoking by five percent over a two-year period. It bans tobacco advertising in all media, outlaws smoking in offices, schools and shopping centres and raises the minimun age for buying cigarettes from 16 to 18.
It also makes it obligatory for restaurants and bars over 100 square metres to set up non-smoking sections. Smaller venues will have to choose whether to ban or allow the use of tobacco on their premises.