03 November, 2017
The company's corporate planning director, Hirotaka Matsushima - a non-smoker himself - said the scheme was "pretty popular".
Representative ImageThis is exactly what a Tokyo-based company Piala Inc. did when they received a complaint from their suggestion box saying that smoking was affecting the quality of work.
Non-smoking employees at one Japanese firm are getting six additional days of paid holiday to compensate for the time their colleagues spend puffing away at work. "The company is willing to take an even tougher anti-smoking measure in the future", said a public relations officer.
Following the suggestion, the company's CEO Takao Asuka chose to give non-smoking employees extra time off to compensate, Matsushima added. "Without doing anything, (nonsmokers') vacation increases by six days".More news: Alleged match-fixing sparks controversy ahead of Blackcaps v India ODI
Over 20% of Japanese adults smoke, according to World Health Organisation figures, although the habit is more prevalent among men and the older generation.
The move is aimed at enhancing employees' health by preventing their exposure to secondhand tobacco smoke, scientifically confirmed as causing health risks.
Smoking is a big part of Japan's business culture, with office buildings often offering indoor smoking rooms.
Japan lags behind other developed nations in terms of smoke-free policies and the social pressure to quit is less intense. But curbing tobacco use in Japan will likely be hard, as it was in the U.S. Original efforts by the country's health ministry to ban indoor smoking in restaurants were scaled back after lobbyists pressured politicians. Especially those countries which are leading amongst the smoking consumption.