Taiwan, China launches public consultation on e-cigarette flavors

Taiwan, China launches public consultation on e-cigarette flavors

A 2022 survey in Taiwan showed a 2.6% increase in the use of flavored e-cigarettes among adults, especially women, with Taiwanese health officials expressing concern about the growing popularity of these products. More specifically, in 2021, 40% of adolescent e-cigarette users in Taiwan used flavored e-cigarettes, with the proportion among junior high school girls (57.2%) and high school (60.7%) higher than boys.

Local health officials believe e-cigarettes increase the likelihood that teenagers will become addicted to other substances. To this end, they have launched a public consultation to ban specific flavors such as chocolate and mint from these products.

01. Taipei City has handled the matter on its own

The new decree bans the import, sale, manufacture, display or advertising of e-cigarettes and heated tobacco products and their components. However, individuals with special government licenses will be exempted. Violators may face fines ranging from NT$10,000 (US$354) to NT$100,000, and may face a second fine and suspension unless they correct the violation within the prescribed period.

The legislation also sets out age limits, banning the use of e-cigarettes and heated tobacco products by those under 18. If minors are found using this product, they will be forced to attend a smoking cessation class, or be fined not less than NT$2,000 but not more than NT$10,000. In addition, e-cigarettes and the use of heated tobacco products are prohibited within 50m of the school.

A debate held by the China Debate Promotion Association (CDPA) at the NGO Building in Taipei in March 2022 discussed how to regulate e-cigarette products based on scientific evidence and human needs. The main debate at the event was whether e-cigarettes should be regulated, and included different public policy perspectives.

02. The government’s reasons for promulgating the ban have been proven to be unfounded.

Debate participant Huang Guanlin said the government's reasons for banning e-cigarettes, such as the risk of rising vaping rates among teenagers and the fact that the products act as a gateway to smoking, are unreasonable.

Bi Yingying countered that random inspections found that more than 90% of e-cigarette products contain harmful substances. It added that given that the country has ratified the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHOFCTC) and the long-term goal is to reduce the use of all tobacco (including e-cigarettes), the government should not allow the use of e-cigarettes while using e-cigarettes. . The pursuit of goals.

A survey aimed at understanding local parents’ views on the ban found that 97% agreed with a ban on e-cigarette products. The survey, conducted by the National Alliance of Parent Organizations, showed a majority of people were dissatisfied with the current measures, which only ban some products.
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