• May 26, 2024

Malaysia PM Urges Regulation E-liquids

 Malaysia PM Urges Regulation E-liquids
Photo: Max

The government of Malaysia wants to regulate and tax nicotine liquids, reports New Straits Times, citing Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim.

Speaking during the presentation of the government’s 2023 buget, Anwar said that although vape with nicotine is illegal, the product is still being sold widely with an estimated market size of more than MYR2 billion. “Would it not be great if it is monitored and taxed to discourage the usage of vape,” asked Anwar, who is also the finance minister.

While welcoming the proposal to introduce a regulatory and taxation framework for e-cigarettes, industry groups insisted on consultations. “Regulations and tax rates need to be balanced given it will impact local industry players,” said The Malaysian Vape Chamber of Commerce.

In his presentation, Anwar also expressed support for the Generational Endgame (GEG) bill, which would make it illegal for people born after 2007 to buy tobacco products, including e-cigarettes.

The Advanced Centre for Addiction Treatment Advocacy (ACATA) said the government must conduct more studies on the GEG proposal before making any decision.

While ACATA is encouraged by the government is taking steps to regulate vape, the agency said prohibition was likely to backfire. “There is substantial and credible evidence to prove that vape products are less harmful than smoking cigarettes,” the organization stated. It also cited evidence showing that vaping is effective in helping smokers to quit smoking cigarettes without attracting many never-smokers. ACATA cited a 2020 study, which found that only 0.6 percent of Malaysian nonsmokers vape.

The Malaysian Vapers Alliance, meanwhile, expressed disappointment that the government supported the GEG proposal, saying that cigarettes and vapor products should be treated differently, given the vast difference in risk they present.