Smoke gets in their eyes

Local newspaper, Monaco Matin, reports today that several Monaco trade unions are hoping to turn casinos into no smoking areas.

Since 1st January 2008, smoking has been banned in places of work in both France and Italy, the two countries surrounding the Principality. One argument against the ban being introduced in Monaco is that local commerce will benefit from "smoking tourism", an expectation that French and Italian smokers will travel to Monte Carlo just so they can continue to enjoy a cigarette while eating or drinking. Some, like Joel Robuchon, will take matters into their own hands and ban the practice. Others will carefully consider the potential loss of custom from millionaire residents. One or two may also question how a country that promotes environmental issues can allow some of its people to pollute the working environment with tobacco fumes. Let's also not forget that Monaco has already asserted its independent status by allowing tobacco advertising during the 2007 Grand Prix. The smoking issue is likely to be hotly debated for quite some time.