China: E-Cig Licensing Rules Explained

    Photo: Taco Tuinstra

    The law firm Kelller & Heckman has published an article summarizing the requirements for obtaining an e-cigarette manufacturing license in China.

    The State Tobacco Monopoly Administration (STMA) has now published a rule outlining the process for Chinese e-cigarette manufacturers to obtain the required manufacturer license. This rule applies not only to manufacturers producing e-cigarettes for the domestic Chinese market, but also to the manufacturing of e-cigarettes solely for export.

    According to Keller & Heckman, manufacturers will have to prepare many materials for their license application. Among other information, they will have to provide proof of suitable funds, production and sales information, including the balance sheet, income statement, cash flow statement and production and sales statistics.

    E-liquid manufacturers will have to supply a license for operating dangerous chemicals and identify the sources of nicotine used in the past three years. Applicants for export must submit materials explaining the export business and the scale of export, including the customs declaration forms for the past three years

    Remarkably, the rules require companies manufacturing exclusively for export to obtain trademark registration in China. Although Keller and Heckman considers it unlikely that the STMA intended to impose the Chinese trademark registration requirement on exporters, the law firm advises clients to seek clarification from the authorities.