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Vaping Law Stubs Out Options For Smokers

Imperial Brands says it is excited that a new law will allow it to sell vapes but is disappointed that the Smokefree Environments and Regulated Products (Vaping) Amendment Bill has made vapes harder to get than cigarettes.

Imperial Brands spokesperson Kirsten Daggar-Nickson says the Bill’s restrictions on retail sales, flavours and communication will mean fewer smokers switch to less harmful vapes.

“New Zealand will have one of the more permissive regimes in the world. We can work with this framework and we will continue to manufacture, promote and retail our myblu system to smokers under the new law.

“But while the spirit of the Bill is good, it doesn’t fully live up to its intent to reduce harm to smokers.

“Public health experts say vaping products should be more attractive and available to smokers than cigarettes and that overly cautious restrictions will mean smokers keep up their habit.

“The Bill puts more limits on places you can buy vapes, than there are on cigarettes. That means a smoking habit is easier to maintain than vaping.

“While the new Act acknowledges that it’s better for smokers to transition to vaping, MPs were unfortunately still stuck on the old ‘quit-or-die’ mentality toward smokers’ health.

“MPs appeared to agree with the smoking experts most of the time, but ignored their advice that the risk of non-smokers and youth taking up vaping is low. ASH New Zealand’s survey of 30,000 year 10 students in New Zealand found only 3.1% of vaped daily.

“The task of striking the right balance between improving smokers’ health and limiting youth uptake has been left in the hands of regulators. It is a very confused outcome for a law whose purpose is to encourage smokers to take up less harmful vaping, but then restricts their choice.

“We will also do everything we can to innovate and make available a range of vape products to suit the very specific nicotine profiles and behavioral habits of individual smokers. The science is evolving all time and new generation vape products are getting much more effective at replacing cigarettes.”

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