The Minister for Health, Micheál Martin, will travel to New York to see how the ban on smoking in pubs and restaurants operates.

While this is not the only purpose of his trip, Mr Martin is expected to visit a number of hotels and bars to see how the rule is being implemented.

Tomorrow, he will sign the United Nations framework convention on tobacco control at the UN headquarters.

The minister is also due to meet officials from the New York City health department to discuss the ban.

Mr Martin will also meet his American counterpart in Washington.