The smoking ban is being ignored in almost half of the country’s smallest bars and cafes, according research by the food safety authority VWA.
Before the courts ruled small cafés without staff were not covered by the ban only 15% still allowed smoking.
The inspectors checked 6,479 bars, cafes and restaurants between July and October and handed out 184 fines.
In total, some 27% of bars and cafes still allow smoking, the inspectors said. This is up 10 percentage points on the previous figures. One in 10 has set up a sealed-off area for smokers.
Health minister Ab Klink has pledged to close the loophole which allows cafes without staff to break the ban.
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