Tobacco control bill to be presented next month to regulate vaping industry - Zaliha

KUALA LUMPUR: The Health Ministry will present the Control of Tobacco Products and Smoking Bill 2022 in parliament next month to ensure comprehensive control over nicotine-laced products.

Health Minister Dr Zaliha Mustafa said the Bill would regulate the manufacturing of all smoking products including electronic cigarettes or vape which contained gel and liquid nicotine.

"The ministry has conducted an engagement session regarding the policies that have been set under this new Bill including the Generational End Game Provision (GEG) to all stakeholders such as parliamentarians, non-governmental organisations, professional bodies and other relevant parties.

"The ministry aims to present this Bill immediately at the Second Meeting, Second Term, of the Fifteenth Parliament which is expected in May 2023," she said in a statement.

Earlier today, the New Straits Times reported that the Health Ministry has approved ( the amendment to the Poisons Act 1952, to remove nicotine from the list of poisons.

This was to pave the way for the legalisation of nicotine-laced products to allow for it to be taxed.

Zaliha said the exemption of nicotine in the Poisons Act is in line with Budget 2023 on which the government would impose an excise duty on liquid or gel products containing nicotine used for electronic cigarettes and vaping.

Further to this exemption, she said, liquid or gel containing nicotine for the purpose of smoking through electronic cigarettes or electronic vaporisation devices were now an excise duty item and controlled under the Excise Act 1976 [Act 176].

The Excise Act 1976 provides control among other things by licensing manufacturing and warehousing activities. Any person who manufactures excise duty goods without a license may be subject to legal action.

She said the ministry would intensify awareness campaigns against smoking.

"The ministry is taking notes of the concerns, reactions and feedback received in the mass media following the exclusion of liquid or gel containing nicotine for the purpose of smoking using electronic cigarettes or electronic vaporisation devices from the List of Poisons in the First Schedule of the Poisons Act 1952 [Act 366].

"The ministry will intensify advocacy campaigns to raise awareness of the dangers of smoking, including the use of electronic cigarettes or vaping through the Generational Endgame Anti-Smoking Plan (Gegar) by continuing the implementation of smoking prevention programmes and interventions in schools and higher education institutions through collaboration with the Education Ministry, Higher Education Ministry, Graduate Volunteer Foundation, Malaysian Youth Council and other related non-governmental bodies," she said.

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