The World: Prague - Czechs facing heavy fine for tobacco ad ban delay

The Czech Republic is moving closer to a tobacco ad ban - but still faces a big fine from the European Union Commission for dragging its heels on the issue.

The country's Chamber of Deputies has amended laws on tobacco advertising to bring them into line with EU legislation. The change must now be approved by the Parliament's Senate and the president, Vaclav Klaus.

However, the country could still be fined several million euros by the EU Commission, which had been threatening to hand the matter over to the European Court of Justice.

Meanwhile, members of the Czech ad community have set up the Alliance for Competition on the Television Advertising Market in the face of regulation that will see all advertising gradually disappear from the public TV service, Ceska Televize.