In a major crackdown, China on Monday banned the sale of flavoured e-cigarettes across the country. The ban is an attempt by the Chinese government to keep underage vaping in check which had been growing steadily.
Reportedly, the ban will only affect the flavoured vaping devices as the tobacco variants will continue to be produced. However, a survey has shown that tobacco e-cigarettes account for a tiny percentage of the total sales figure. Meaning, the move has the potential to end the vaping culture in China for good.
Under the sweeping ban which came into effect on October 1, no sale of e-cigarettes will be allowed on online platforms.
Additionally, the companies will have to add a warning label to devices citing they are harmful and must not be consumed, especially by school children.
Relx, a company that commanded the Chinese vaping market with a 70 per cent share has lost over 95 per cent of its stock value after the government started mulling the proposal. The ban effectively is like a death knell for companies like Relx.
While China is banning the sale of such devices domestically, it will continue to export them to countries globally. The total exports from China stood at $19 billion in 2021 which was a whopping 180 per cent increase year-on-year.
According to a Reuters report, flavoured disposable vaping devices account for one-third of US e-cigarette sales, up from less than two per cent three years ago. The majority of these devices are exported by China.
While initially vaping products were dubbed a ‘valuable aid to quit tobacco’, their apparent ill health effects have forced governments across the globe to set guidelines and some sort of restrictions on their sale.
As reported by WION, in June, the European Union proposed to ban the use of flavoured heated tobacco products.
“With nine out of ten lung cancers caused by tobacco, we want to make smoking as unattractive as possible to protect the health of our citizens and save lives,” said EU health commissioner Stella Kyriakides in a statement.
Meanwhile, the American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in January 2020 banned all flavours except tobacco and menthol in Juul and other cartridge-based e-cigarettes.