The Minister of Health, Trinidad Jiménez, has announced that although the Anti-Tobacco Law will be reformed this year to prohibit smoking in all enclosed public places, it is unlikely to occur until the second half of 2010.
The original idea was for the reform of the law, which will prohibit smoking in all bars and restaurants, to coincide with the Spanish presidency of the EU, but this is now highly unlikely.
The Ministry is still busy seeking a consensus with parliamentary groups and industry representatives to ensure that the final text of the law has the most possible support.
The reforms will bring Spain more in line with countries such as the UK, Holland, Italy and France where smoking in bars and restaurants is already prohibited. Spain is unlikely to follow the example of Ireland where the smoking ban is 100%.
Factors being considered are job losses and the closure of some establishments.