- Posted April 1, 2014 by
The Latest Updates on Electronic Cigarettes Legislation in the EU
A meeting of the European Parliament in France in February approved the draft of a set of tough legislation for electronic cigarettes concerning the regulation of their content and also tight controls over the marketing of the products. The rules received five hundred votes in their favour, however there were sixty-three votes against with a further sixty abstentions. The final draft of the rules now just needs approval of the member states but is it highly likely that they will be rubber stamped in April, and the rules could set a precedent for legislation of e-cigs in other parts of the world.
The legislation will come into force in just over two years, however shops in Europe will still be allowed to continue selling electronic cigarettes as consumer products following fears from earlier drafts of the law that sought to reclassify the products as medicines (member states have been given the option to regulate them as medicines if they so choose to do so). The rules voted in are in effect a controversial compromise with advertising of the e-cigs banned in all twenty-eight countries of the European Union.
If three member states adopt a ban on a specific cartridge, the European Commission without approval by parliament or member states can unilaterally impose a ban at EU level. There is also a cap on the cartridge size at two millilitres. Perhaps the most controversial ruling is that of a new maximum permitted level of nicotine concentration, which has been set at twenty milligrams per millilitre.
It is not just the electronic version of cigarettes that have been affected with traditional cigarettes also coming under pressure - new rulings include pictorial warnings covering at least sixty-five percent of the pack (e-cig packaging will now be required to include a modest warning that nicotine is addictive and could be harmful) plus a ban on all characterising flavours including menthol which has been given a four year derogation to 2020.
The new rules have been met with criticism by those who say that health will be harmed more than helped by placing restrictions on an industry trying to present tobacco smokers with a healthier alternative.
For more information and articles on electronic cigarettes, visit: http://www.vaporcigarette.co.uk