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EU: ECigIntelligence has today launched its third Survey on New Nicotine Products in the EU. We are asking Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) about their views on e-cigarettes, heated tobacco and nicotine pouches and their regulation. Consolidated results will be published, comparing the results with similar surveys carried out in the past two years. This year’s survey is especially relevant given the current policy debates on the topic. In both previous surveys, there was a clear correlation between higher levels of knowledge about novel nicotine products and lower perceived risk. Though the exact degrees of correlation varied by product category, the overall picture was consistent: those who were aware of and had some knowledge of a given category considered it less risky, compared to smoking combustibles, than those unfamiliar with it.
China: Ahead of the implementation on Saturday, 1st October, of the new national standard for e-cigarette products, the tobacco administration has published a notice reiterating that e-cigarettes intended for export must comply with the regulations of the destination country or region. If the destination country does not have relevant laws, the products must comply with Chinese rules. E-cigarette manufacturers with a tobacco monopoly manufacturer's licence who are engaging in exports should make export filings through the electronic cigarette trading management platform. The administration will accept objections from existing e-cigarette manufacturers from 8th to 31st October.
Russia: Sholban Kara-ool, deputy speaker of the State Duma, from the governing United Russia faction, has told the Tass news agency that a ban on e-cigarettes would not work. He said what was needed was public recognition of the harmfulness of substances contained in vapour products.
Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU): The Council of the Eurasian Economic Commission decided last week to introduce traceability marking for e-cigarettes throughout the EAEU. The five member states – Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Russia – will reportedly determine individually their own procedure and enforcement dates.
Costa Rica: A bill imposing neutral packaging for tobacco products, including e-cigarettes both with and without nicotine, has received the approval of the Legislative Assembly Social Affairs Committee, press reports. The bill, which would also ban advertising and increase the size of health warnings from 50% to 80% of the package area, will now go to the full Assembly to be voted on in two debates.
France: The Ministry of Health has told a French journalist that disposable e-cigarettes are under scrutiny by the health authorities. The ministry also confirmed that – contrary to rumour – the proposed increase in taxes on tobacco products, linking planned rises to inflation, does not apply to vaping products.
US - Portland Oregon metropolitan area: Washington County’s Ordinance 878 – which passed last November, has been on hold since January, was ratified by voters in May, but kept on hold by a preliminary injunction in July – has now been struck down by a circuit court judge, who decided the county had no authority to enact a local ban on the sale of flavoured tobacco products. The county has issued a statement disagreeing with the ruling and saying it will consider options for an appeal.
US - California: The city of Chula Vista has unanimously voted to ban the sale of flavoured tobacco and vaping products from 1st January 2023, local media reports. With a population of over 275,000, Chula Vista is the second-largest city in the San Diego metropolitan area.
UK: Asked about packaging restrictions on e-cigarettes, junior health minister Caroline Johnson said the Department of Health and Social Care was exploring whether any additional measures could be introduced to prevent children from vaping, including restrictions related to packaging. The Tobacco Control Plan which could set out these proposals is yet to be published.
UK - Scotland: The Scottish government published a report yesterday on the findings from the consultation on proposed restrictions on e-cigarette advertising . A total of 757 responses were submitted, mostly by individuals. The respondents were nearly equally divided on all issues: 51.5% opposed further restrictions on advertising, while 50.7% agreed that the use of e-cigarettes as a smoking cessation tool should be limited and that exposure to them by non-smokers should be restricted.
South Korea: The Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency today warned of an increasingly widespread use by young people of flavoured tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, which it says are a gateway to smoking. The agency refers to a study showing a 12% increase between 2016 and 2022 in the use of flavoured tobacco products by smokers aged 13-39.
South Africa: The government has approved the submission to Parliament of the 2018 Tobacco Products and Electronic Delivery Systems Control Bill, which will regulate e-cigarettes both with and without nicotine. Among other things, the bill – the latest version of which has not yet been published – proposes “100% smoke-free indoor” and some outdoor non-smoking and non-vaping areas, and strengthens the rules on packaging and health warnings.
US - federal: The FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products (CTP) has published a new webinar providing a brief overview of the resources available to retailers to help prevent the sale of tobacco products to under-21s, focusing on age verification, internal compliance checks, and recommended training practices. The webinar also covers recent updates to federal law on products that contain synthetic nicotine.
UK: The consultation on the voluntary standard developed by the British Standards Institution (BSI), PAS 8855, on vape product quality, performance and safety issues ends today, 28th September.
Netherlands: As the ECigIntelligence Compliance Calendar shows, today marks the end of the Ministry of Health, Wellbeing and Sports’ consultation on the regulation to limit the range of permitted flavours for e-liquids. If further adopted, the new rules will come into force on 1st January 2023, allowing for products produced before that date to remain on the market until 1st July 2023.
Italy: The far-right Brothers of Italy party (Fratelli d’Italia) took first place in Sunday’s election with over 26% of the vote, and is likely to form a coalition with other right-wing parties, Forza Italia and the League. In the past, right-wing parties have generally supported a more lenient regulatory approach to new nicotine products, with Matteo Salvini, leader of the League, in particular being supportive of the vaping sector.
US - federal: Brian King, director of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)’s Center for Tobacco Products (CTP) has told the Associated Press news agency (AP) about his approach to policymaking, including potential flavour restrictions. He mentioned the nicotine-salts technology in e-cigarettes that could be a good fit for smokers, but also warned of its danger to youth.
US - federal: The FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products (CTP) is seeking nominations for two people to serve as voting members on the Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee (TPSAC). Individuals may self-nominate or be put forward by any interested person or organisation. Nominations received on or before 25th November will be given first consideration. Nominations received after that date will be considered as later vacancies occur.
Denmark: The health and finance ministries are setting up a combined task force to strengthen control over nicotine and tobacco products, focusing primarily on flavoured disposable e-cigarettes. Including members of the Danish Safety Technology Authority and the Consumer Ombudsman, it will aim to ensure that new product trends are addressed quickly.
US - federal: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has sent out a new batch of warning letters to e-liquid manufacturers accused of offering for sale or distribution e-liquid products (listed in the letter) without a marketing authorisation order.
UK: Answering a question about the management of e-cigarette waste, London mayor Sadiq Khan said Londoners can recycle waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) at their local household waste recycling centre and that waste bins for small electrical devices had been introduced in communal bin stores, resulting in a 52% reduction in small electricals going into non-recycled waste from London flats. Lastly, Khan noted that all boroughs are encouraged to include the Flats Recycling Package in their reduction and recycling plans.
Denmark: Health minister Magnus Heunicke has called a meeting today with social media companies, the Danish Safety Technology Authority and several associations to discuss the use of disposable e-cigarettes by children and young people. He stressed that e-cigs with flavours other than tobacco and menthol are illegal in Denmark.
Malaysia: Health minister Khairy Jamaluddin has said he expects to finalise the review of the Tobacco and Smoking Control Bill 2022 next week with the parliamentary special select committee in order to table it again in the upcoming parliamentary session, which starts on 3rd October, press reports. Khairy said MPs were generally in favour of the bill, which proposes a ban on vaping products for those born on or after 1st January 2007, and that most of the issues raised during the bill’s first reading had been resolved by the committee.
Spain: The largest anti-tobacco organisation in Spain, the Smoking Prevention Committee (CNPT), has launched a campaign against tobacco and nicotine products, with the hashtag #stophumotabaconicotina (stop smoke, tobacco, and nicotine). The CNPT is urging the government to pass the regulations on vaping and tobacco products that it announced in May.
US - federal: Juul Labs has sued the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) over the agency’s refusal to disclose documents supporting its order banning the company from selling its e-cigarettes on the US market, Reuters reports. In a complaint filed yesterday in federal court, Juul says the FDA has withheld scientific evidence which would show whether it conducted a legally required balancing of the public health benefits and risks of its products.
EU: The European Commission has published a draft delegated regulation amending Regulation (EC) No 1272/2008 on hazard classes and criteria for the classification, labelling and packaging of substances and mixtures (CLP). The amendment aims to update the CLP Regulation with new hazard classes and their criteria to take technical and scientific progress into account. This may impose new obligations on producers of e-cigarettes, covering more chemicals that may be contained in a device or delivery mechanism. The draft regulation is open until 18th October for comment, which will be taken into account in finalising the revised regulation.
US - Michigan: A number of bills were to be heard today in the Senate Committee on Regulatory Reform, including Senate Bill 572, SB 573, SB 574 and SB 575, all of which relate to the regulation of tobacco and vapour products. SB 572 would further tax consumable materials at 18% of the wholesale price if part of an open vapour system or $0.60 per ml if contained in a closed-system cartridge; alternative nicotine products would be taxed at $0.50 per oz on the basis of net weight of the product as listed by the manufacturer.
Egypt: A circular issued by the Customs Authority makes clear that the General Organisation for Export and Import Control (GOEIC) is responsible for testing e-liquids in the authority’s laboratories – located in Egyptian ports – to ensure they conform to Egyptian standards.