China Considers a Complete Ban on Ecig Sales and Manufacturing
Anti-smoking advocates in China are waging a war against electronic cigarettes. The Council on Smoking and Health wants to see a total ban against the sale, use, and even manufacturing of ecigarettes. The recent controversy stems from a survey conducted by University of Hong Kong’s School of Public Health. After interviewing more than 800 participants with roughly a third being between ages 15-29, authorities found that 4.4 percent of people in the younger age group had tried an ecig compared to only one percent of people over age 30.
Some participants reported trying ecigs out of curiosity because they saw friends using them. Others said they chose vaping as a way to stop smoking. Lam Tai-hing from the School of Public Health said the results show that is time for authorities to step up with some hard hitting regulations. He said now is the time to ban ecigs before they gain any more popularity among the younger Chinese population.
Associate Professor Daniel Ho Sai-yin explained that ecigs do pose a health risk because the propylene glycol in some ecig liquids could cause irritations to the mouth and throat. Additionally, he said they contain nicotine which is not only addictive, but could also pose a serious threat to the development of infants, children, and teens.
Ho believes that ultimately the risk is too great because there is much that is still unknown about the long term impact of vaping. While some believe ecigs are safe, Ho said, ‘There is no evidence to prove this, and after lighting up (ecigarettes), different known and unknown chemicals could be released… it’s hard to assess the dangers.”
Researchers argue that ecigs are far safer than cigarettes, with no tar, tobacco, or carcinogens. In a recent study, scientists found that the newer generation devices actually cause reduced nicotine consumption. Multiple studies have confirmed that ecigs are effective for smoking cessation.
Unfortunately, China’s health officials are ignoring the medical research and pushing forward in hopes of a total ban on vaping. Council Chairman Antonio Kwong Cho-shing hopes to see a total blackout on all ecigs in China: no more manufacturing, importation, distribution, advertising, or sales.
Do you think Chinese lawmaker will submit the wishes of these health officials or will they continue to allow vaping and ecig manufacturing?