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Lawmaker calls for swift passage of vape regulation bill

MANILA, July 12 — A lawmaker has asked the House of Representatives to fast-track the approval of a measure that would police the use, sale, packaging, distribution, and advertisements of vaporized nicotine products.

In a statement on Thursday, AKO Bicol Partylist Representative Rodel Batocabe called on the House Committee on Health to start deliberating on House Bill 3330 or the “Vaporized Nicotine Product Regulation Act”.

“We are seeking to enact the Vape Regulation Bill in order to guarantee the safety of our Filipino consumers. This will provide a clear-cut policy in addressing the concerns and issues concerning the use of e-cigarettes,” Batocabe said.

Batocabe said it is high-time for the bill’s passage in light of the recent pronouncement of the Department of Health (DOH) to adopt the recommendation of the World Health Organization (WHO) to disallow the use of vaporized nicotine products in indoor spaces.

“Since the medical and scientific communities have yet to arrive at a consensus regarding the safety of e-cigarettes, in the absence of the Philippine Food and Drug Administration’s validation, we should not assume that these products have the absolute propensity as reduced risk nicotine-delivery systems,” he added.

Batocabe said the regulation of the vaping industry would guarantee the quality and safety of the items available for use in the market, noting that products will be required to be registered at the Department of Trade and Industry three months prior to its release in the market.

Under the bill, vaporized nicotine products shall contain instructions for its handling, use, and maintenance with a health warning that shall read as “this product may damage your health and is addictive”.

The bill also prohibits minors from purchasing and using vaporized nicotine products. Purchasing vaporized nicotine products from a minor is also forbidden as part of the stringent regulation of e-cigarettes. (FMC/PNA)

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