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US - general: The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids has urged the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to enforce the congressionally mandated deadline and clear the market of any synthetic nicotine products, including e-cigarettes, that had not obtained FDA authorisation by yesterday, 13th July. It emphasised that a growing number of e-cigarette manufacturers have increasingly switched to using synthetic nicotine since the FDA acted against flavoured products made with tobacco-derived nicotine. The statement by campaign president Matthew Myers singled out Puff Bar as “the most popular e-cigarette brand among kids” and said it “sells synthetic nicotine products with kid-friendly flavors like Banana Ice and Cool Mint”.
Malaysia: The Cabinet yesterday approved the Tobacco and Smoking Control Bill that sets out to ban the sale of vaping products to anyone born in or after 2005, press reports. The Cabinet’s approval allows health minister Khairy Jamaluddin to table the bill in Parliament, which he intends to do during the upcoming session, which begins on Monday, 18th July.
US- general: Today, 13th July, is the final date for synthetic nicotine products to be marketed in the US without a premarket tobacco product application (PMTA) having been submitted by 14th May. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been criticised for its statement that it could not say how many companies selling such products had submitted an application – making it impossible to estimate the real number of illegal products on the market, media reports. Senator Dick Durbin said: “It seems that the FDA is unable to implement processes for monitoring the market and neglects its duty to ensure compliance with the law.” Matt Myers, president of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, said: “If FDA allowed products to remain on the market that didn’t file an application, it is both directly contrary to the law and puts America’s kids at risk.” Lawyer Azim Chowdhury said he expected the FDA “to go after big companies known for marketing to kids, and hopes the agency does not try to put small vape shops out of business”.
US - federal: The American Vapor Manufacturers Association has formally asked the inspector general of the US Department of Health and Human Services to investigate “unethical political interference between Congress and FDA”. Specifically it queries whether the commissioner was aware that the FDA’s Juul decision was based on incomplete information; calls for all correspondence between the commissioner and members of Congress (including senator Dick Durbin and representative Raja Krishnamoorthi) to be made public; and also for other communications between the commissioner and a Wall Street Journal reporter, between him and his immediate predecessor, and between any FDA officials and the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and Parents Against Vaping to be made public.
Spain: The National Committee for Smoking Prevention (CNPT) has published a statement expressing concern about the widely reported decision of the Ministry of Health to stop work on an amendment of the Tobacco Act. The CNPT, which is the leading anti-tobacco organisation in Spain and is associated with medical and health organisations, is urging the ministry to confirm whether or not it will indeed abandon its legislative plans. It also insists on the need to approve laws that reduce nicotine and tobacco consumption and asks the ministry about the Comprehensive Plan for the Prevention and Control of Smoking 2021-2025, which was meant to have been approved already. Both the Tobacco Act amendment and the prevention and control plan were intended to impose further restrictions on both tobacco and vaping products.
Mexico: The Federal Commission for Protection Against Public Health Risks (Cofepris) has closed down more than 179 shops and vending machines and seized almost 65,000 e-cigarettes since January 2021, press reports. The Cofepris action comes after e-cig sales were banned by the government, an order that has been contested in court multiple times.
Uruguay: The Ministry of Education and Culture has approved the setting-up of the Association of Vapers of Uruguay (Asovape), which seeks to reduce smoking and regulate the consumption of e-cigarettes, press reports. The ministry said the association would “promote through education...the ways of reducing the harm associated with smoking”. The sale of e-cigarettes has been banned in Uruguay since 2009.
Spain: The Ministry of Health has decided not to continue with its planned amendment to the Tobacco Act, press reports. The government has decided there is not enough time before its term ends at the end of 2023 to undertake the reform, which would have banned smoking on open-air terraces, in cars with children or pregnant women present, and in open-air stadiums. It would also have established neutral packaging and further restricted the advertising of tobacco and vaping products. The amendment was framed within the Comprehensive Plan for the Prevention and Control of Smoking 2021-2025, which was meant to be approved by June 2022 and now presumably will not be approved.
US - federal: Tomorrow, 13th July, is the last day synthetic nicotine products can be marketed in the US without a premarket tobacco product application (PMTA) having been submitted by 14th May. While the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will maintain enforcement discretion, it will be illegal after tomorrow to distribute such products without a PMTA.
Philippines: The Presidential Office has confirmed to ECigIntelligence that it received the Vaporized Nicotine Products Regulation Bill, which will further regulate vaping products, on 24th June, six days before president Bongbong Marcos took office. If the president does not act on a bill submitted by Congress, it lapses into law after 30 days of receipt.
Hungary: The Supervisory Authority for Regulatory Activities (SZFTH) has provided ECigIntelligence with figures showing that sales of e-liquids grew steadily in 2017, 2018 and 2019 but began to fall with the introduction of a flavour ban in May 2020. Sales slid from 16,000 l in 2019 to 12,400 l in 2020, 9,500 l in 2021 and 4,200 liters in the five-month period from 1st January to 31st May 2022.
Saudi Arabia: The National Committee for Tobacco Control has tweeted that the Islamic pilgrimage season, the Hajj, is an opportunity to quit smoking, and stressed that under the Anti-Smoking Law Royal Decree No. (M/56)/2015 it is prohibited to consume any tobacco product in religious areas, including squares and places surrounding mosques. Saudi Arabia’s anti-smoking regulations also apply to e-cigarettes.
France: Senator Françoise Férat of the Centrist Union Group has submitted a parliamentary question to the minister for ecological transition asking whether he is considering banning disposable e-cigarettes. Férat said disposables encouraged consumption and increased the volume of waste, amounting to an “ecological disaster”.
Iceland: A bill amending Law 87/2018 on electronic cigarettes and refills has today come into force. It makes the sale of vaping products subject to licensing by the Housing and Civil Engineering Institute and explicitly prohibits the advertising of e-cigarettes on social media.
Saudi Arabia: The Zakat, Tax and Customs Authority has introduced an initial draft through the Public Consultation Platform, proposing amendments to the executive bylaw on excise tax. It suggests that a warehouse should be eligible for licensing as a tax warehouse if it acquires an average of 500,000 vaping devices a year rather than 1m devices as at present, and 125,000 l of e-liquid rather than 500,000. The authority has until 30th July to discuss the amendments before accepting them.
US - Federal: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued another batch of warning letters to manufacturers and distributors of e-liquid products that it regards as “new tobacco products” lacking the required FDA marketing authorisation.
Brazil: The board of the National Public Health Surveillance Agency (Anvisa) decided unanimously at an extraordinary meeting yesterday, 6th July, to maintain the existing ban on e-cigarettes and heated tobacco. The agency will now prepare a regulatory draft that will be sent to the body’s governing body, the college, for deliberation. The college will later decide whether or not to open the draft for a public consultation.
Sweden: The Public Health Agency has updated the public list of notified e-cigarettes and refill containers, containing 12,054 vapour products.
Italy: The Custom and Monopoly Agency (ADM) has updated the lists of notified nicotine-containing and nicotine-free e-cigarette products, now containing a total of 21,341 products.
Philippines: Presidential spokesperson Trixie Cruz-Angeles has told reporters that the new president, Ferdinand Marcos Jr, has given no indication of whether or not he supports the Vaporized Nicotine Products Regulation Bill, which would change regulations on vaping products. Bills approved by the former Congress lapse into law if the president fails to act on it within 30 days of receiving it. The presidential office has not confirmed to ECigIntelligence when the bill was received.
Romania: The Ministry of Finance has introduced a bill to progressively increase the excise duty on e-cigarettes and e-liquids. It proposes duty on e-liquids at RON0.62 (€0.13) for 2022; RON0.72 (€0.15) in 2023; RON0.81 (€0.16) in 2024; RON0.91 (€0.18) in 2025 and RON1.03 (€0.21) in 2026. If the bill is approved, the new rate will come into force on 1st August and be updated on that date every year.
US - Federal: The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has administratively stayed its marketing denial order (MDO) against Juul Labs, says “there are scientific issues unique to the Juul application that warrant additional review”. This only suspends the MDO but does not rescind it -- all e-cigarette products need FDA authorisation in order to be legally marketed.
Brazil: The National Public Health Surveillance Agency (Anvisa) was to discuss the regulation of e-cigarettes and heated tobacco in an extraordinary meeting today, 6th July. The public meeting was called to consider information and comments received during a public consultation, which closed on 10th June. In its preliminary report, published in April, the agency suggested that the existing ban should be maintained. No final decision is expected yet.
France: The National Agency for Food, Environmental, and Occupational Health Safety (ANSES) has published an updated list of notified e-cigarettes, which includes 81,809 products.
US - Michigan: Senate Bill 1109 has been introduced. This bill would prohibit the sale of vapour products with any heating element not made of or encased in glass and/or ceramic.
Luxembourg: In answer to a parliamentary question about whether the increased use by teenagers of flavoured disposable e-cigarettes, as seen in France, was also occurring in Luxembourg, health minister Paulette Lenert said yesterday that as none of the notification fees for disposables had been paid, their presence on the market was illegal. She added that while it did not currently have usage data on these products, “the Ministry of Health takes the emergence of this type of product very seriously [as] the electronic cigarette in all its forms or variants constitutes a potential health risk”.
US - general: The Smoke-Free Alternatives Trade Association (SFATA) met up with the FDA Center for Tobacco Products (CTP) to discuss the future of the vapour industry and what the association called the “pending illicit sales epidemic”. In a meeting well attended by FDA and CTP representatives, the SFATA challenged the mass issuing of marketing denial orders (MDOs) by the FDA, saying it presented the threat of an unregulated illicit market developing. It said that in the cause of reducing youth vaping, the FDA had spread the belief that vapour products are at least as harmful as combustible tobacco. The SFATA, whose presentation used data provided by ECigIntelligence, called on all interested parties to join it in its work of “advocating for a reasonably regulated marketplace”.
EU: EU law requires certain large companies to disclose information on the way they operate and manage social and environmental challenges. The European Council and Parliament have reached an agreement on the rules of the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive, which will impact listed EU and non-EU companies operating in the region, with a turnover of more than €150m. Among more detailed reporting requirements, it requires large companies to report on sustainability issues such as environmental, social and human rights and governance factors, and to have their reported sustainability information independently audited.
Portugal: The Directorate-General for Health has launched its 2030 National Strategy for the Fight against Cancer. Among measures proposed are an increase in e-cigarette and tobacco product prices, regulation of ingredients and packaging, and raising the minimum legal purchase age. The document is under public consultation until 29th July.