CHINESE STATE employees are being asked to do their patriotic duty to support the local economy – by lighting up a cigarette. And no butts.
In Gongan county in Hubei province, the order has come down from above that employees of all local government departments, organisations, service centres and corporations must consume at least 23,000 cartons of cigarettes this year.
This translates into 400 cartons for most departments and state companies, and 140 cartons for each school.
In a law which gives a whole new meaning to the phrase “the state picks up the tab”, cadres are required to smoke local brands, and anyone smoking other brands can be fined. The smoking allowance aims to boost the regional economy by encouraging more consumption of local cigarettes.