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Britain’s £1bn vaping industry ‘is targeting children’ with flavours that resemble sweets

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Bluffing on ciggy ban next

http://www.thestandard.com.hk/section-news.php?id=201105&story_id=50022661&d_str=20181012

Opponents of Carrie Lam’s policy to soon ban e-cigarettes have challenged the government to outlaw traditional cigarettes as well.

Lam’s response: she would not rule out doing so in the long run.

Speaking on radio, Lam said the government’s go-to measure to reduce the smoking population has always been raising the tobacco tax.

But she said she does not need the tobacco tax at all and would not mind a total ban on all cigarettes.

A caller asked: “We all know that cigarettes are harmful to health, but why didn’t you also ban traditional cigarettes? People using e-cigarettes will now turn to traditional cigarettes.”

Lam said since traditional cigarettes have been around for a long time, there are established measures to regulate them.

She added a bold idea like having a timetable to ban traditional cigarettes is possible “because I am relatively bold.”

However, Tsang Kwok-hang of the Asian Vape Association said the policy is like banning air guns but not real guns and said it would wipe out the small and medium-sized e-cigarette enterprises in Hong Kong.

“It’s like taking a step back. The tobacco market is dominated by several companies and this policy would force smaller companies and e-cigarettes stores to close down,” he said.

A dozen newspaper vendors also voiced their concerns, saying they are worried the ban would drive smokers to purchase heated tobacco products from illegal channels.

The group submitted a petition to lawmakers, hoping the government would drop the ban and regulate heated tobacco products, so vendors would not suffer from a loss of sales.

Food and Health Secretary Sophia Chan Siu-chee said the government changed its plan from mere regulating to banning e-cigarettes because it saw a huge backlash from the medical and education sector.

“We also saw studies from the US, Italy and Japan – countries that have not banned but have regulated e-cigarettes – showing that regulation would make it easier for teenagers to try the product,” she said.

Asked if she was worried the ban would force e-cigarette users to turn to traditional cigarettes, Chan said in her experience control policies have been effective in encouraging smokers to quit.

Higher taxes show way to cut smoking in Hong Kong

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Ban unlikely to push smokers back to tobacco: govt

http://news.rthk.hk/rthk/en/video-gallery.htm?vid=1422496

The Secretary for Food and Health, Sophia Chan, on Thursday played down fears that a ban on e-cigarettes could turn people using them to traditional tobacco products instead.

Chan said the people who raise such fears do not have actual proof to back up the claim.

The secretary said that whenever a new anti-smoking policy was introduced in the past, many people quit smoking. But she didn’t offer any figures for this.

Chan said the proposal to ban e-cigarettes was made after data from surveys conducted in recent months found that many local children are into the products.

She stressed that e-cigarettes have been branded as less harmful in order to attract young smokers, making them unaware how dangerous they can be.

The original plan was to prohibit the sale of e-cigarettes to minors, but Chief Executive Carrie Lam proposed an outright ban on importing, selling and promoting such products during her Policy Address on Thursday.

The ban was supported by many in the medical and education sectors, with both sectors’ lawmakers calling for such a move on Tuesday.

Sofia Chan scoffs at fears of switch to nicotine fix

The Secretary for Food and Health, Sophia Chan, does not believe e-cigs users will move on to cigarettes because of the ban.

The Secretary for Food and Health, Sophia Chan, today played down fears that a ban on e-cigarettes could tempt people using them on to traditional tobacco products instead.

Chan said the people who raise such fears do not have evidence to back up the claim, RTHK reports.

Chan said that whenever a new anti-smoking policy was introduced in the past, many people quit smoking. But she did not offer any data on those who quit.

Chan said the proposal to ban e-cigarettes was made after data from surveys conducted in recent months found that many local children favor the products.

She stressed that e-cigarettes have been branded as less harmful to attract young smokers.

The original plan was to prohibit the sale of e-cigarettes to minors, but Chief Executive Carrie Lam proposed an outright ban on importing, selling and promoting such products during her Policy Address.

The ban was supported by many in the medical and education sectors.

Some huffs and puffs over e-cig ban

The proposed ban on electronic cigarettes has caused polarized reactions – with the medical sector supporting it while smokers and the tobacco industry crying foul.

E-cigarettes will soon be totally banned in the city – import, manufacture, sale, distribution and advertisement – along with other new smoking products to protect public health, Carrie Lam said.

The pending ban came as a surprise as the government earlier proposed only to restrict new smoking products the same as normal cigarettes in a Legco proposal in June.

Lam said amendments will be submitted within this legislative session to ban e-cigarettes and all other new smoking products.

E-cigarettes are often packaged as better substitutes to conventional cigarettes, with promotional activities often targeting young people.

Lam believes the harmful effects of these products have been grossly underestimated.

She changed her mind over the original proposal after speaking with Secretary for Food and Health Sophia Chan Siu-chee and reading more about the subject.

A government source said under the amendment, individuals may not be allowed to bring e-cigarettes into the SAR, even if the products are for their own use.

Tobacco companies claim adult smokers are their target audience for e-cigarette products, but the government observed the products come in different flavors that could attract teenagers.

The number of e-cigarette users surged from less than 1,000 to more than 5,000 between 2015 and this year. In addition, 8.7 percent of secondary students have tried smoking e-cigarettes.

The Hong Kong Academy of Medicine and Federations of Parent-Teacher Associations welcomed the decision and urged the government to also restrict traditional cigarettes.

But tobacco company Philip Morris was not impressed, saying the 600,000 adult smokers in the city deserve to access “better products.”

Apart from that, the government will also enhance financial support for patients, in particular those suffering from rare diseases.

It will improve the means test mechanism of the Samaritan Fund and Community Care Fund Medical Assistance Programmes by modifying the calculation method and removing possessions of patients’ parents from household assets.

Also, the first Chinese medicine hospital in Tseung Kwan O will see its operator tendering procedures beginning in the second half of next year. It is expected to be completed and start operating by 2024.

http://www.thestandard.com.hk/breaking-news.php?id=115458&story_id=115458&d_str=20181011

I used e-cigarettes to quit smoking after 10 years trying in vain to stop

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Hospitals head pleased with e-cigarette ban

http://www.thestandard.com.hk/breaking-news.php?id=115353&story_id=115353&d_str=20181010

The Hospital Authority, chairman, Professor John Leong,Professor welcomed today the government’s tobacco control measure in proposing the legislative amendments to ban electronic cigarettes and other new smoking products.

“The HA has always supported the government for more stringent controls on the sale of electronic cigarettes and other new smoking products to mitigate the associated health risks.”

The HA provided smoking cessation services in 69 Smoking Counselling and Cessation Centres for patients who intend to quit smoking. The Centres can provide services to 18,000 patients each year. The success rate has been over 50 per cent.

Nearly 2 million U.S. adult nonsmokers vape

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Officials ‘plugging loopholes’ in proposed Hong Kong ban on e-cigarettes

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