Tobacco Asia

Volume 19, Number 5

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32 tobaccoasia / Issue 5, 2015December/January) By Nattira Medvedeva The exponential growth of e-cigarettes' popular- ity and the explosive growth in the number of manufacturers supplying hardware and e-liquids to answer this demand has led to countries scram- bling to try to regulate e-cigarettes. The European Union now has the revised Tobacco Products Directive (TPD). Starting in mid-2016, TPD re- quires that advertising for e-cigarettes be banned in the 28 nations of the European Union, as well as e-cigarettes having graphic health warnings, be- ing childproof, and having no more than 20 milli- grams of nicotine per milliliter. What TPD will not do is regulate e-cigarettes as medicines, as the par- liament voted in October 2013 to keep e-cigarettes regulated as tobacco. In the US, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) submitted its final rule for e-cigarettes to the White House's Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review in October 2015. The initial re- view timeframe is 90 days but this can be extended, meaning it might still be a while before we find out the extent of the new e-cigarette regulations. At present, FDA regulates only e-cigarettes that are marketed for therapeutic purposes. FDA's new regulations will change that by redefining e- cigarettes as tobacco products. The new regula- tions would also cover pipe tobacco, hookahs, and cigars. They would ban selling e-cigarettes, cigars, hookahs, and pipe tobacco to those under 18 years of age and would require people buying them to show photo identification. The proposed law would also require manufacturers of e-cigarettes to register with FDA, provide the agency with a detailed accounting of their products' ingredients, and disclose their manufacturing processes and scientific data. Companies would also be subject to FDA inspections. Should they have any new products made after 2007, they would need to get FDA approval for them first, but would have two years after the new rules are finalized to do so and can keep their products on the market in the meantime. In June 2014, the White House's OMB weakened some of the language that could have been used to prevent the online sale of e-cigs, as Regulating E-cigarettes Right: Tobacco Product, Not Medicinal E-cigarettes continue to grow in popularity with users around the world. While the popularity of e-cigarettes in Asia has not reached levels as high as in the US or in Europe, there has been a definite upswing with more users turning from conventional cigarettes to electronic ones, even in countries like China and Indonesia that have been recognized as having some of the largest populations of cigarette smokers.

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