Thursday 4 September 2014

Department Of Health: E-Cigs Are Not A Tobacco Product

With parliament just back from recess, Monmouth MP David Davies is out of the blocks sharpish with a written question whose reply raises questions of its own (emphases mine).
David Davies (Monmouth, Conservative) 
To ask the Secretary of State for Health what his policy is on the definition of e-cigarettes as tobacco products under the terms of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. 
Jane Ellison (The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health; Battersea, Conservative) 
Electronic cigarettes are not defined as tobacco products under the World Health Organisation (WHO) Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. The regulation of e-cigarettes, is however, scheduled for discussion at the sixth session of the Conference of the Parties to the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control on 13–18 October 2014.
It would appear to be an extremely well worded question from Davies (whose stance on e-cigs I have no clue) which winkles out a fundamental aspect all but forgotten in the debate over EU and WHO pronouncements on e-cigs.

E-cigs are - Jane Ellison confirms - not defined as a tobacco product under the terms of the WHO FCTC which was ratified by the UK government, neither was it defined as a tobacco product when any other of the 160+ countries ratified it. So anything they demand for e-cigs should be ignored entirely.

In fact, the WHO shouldn't - by its own rules - even be discussing e-cigs until such time as all governments involved have agreed that they should be allowed to.

For a coalition government - led by Conservatives who claim that they want to tackle red tape, intrusions on liberty and unnecessary state interference, and supported by Lib Dems who claim to be supportive of e-cigs - this should be a slam dunk. They can simply tell the WHO that e-cigs are none of their business; that they aren't defined as tobacco products in the document the UK signed; and that the delegates can wibble on about e-cigs in Moscow as much as they like but nothing they say will apply in the UK.

They won't, of course, but that's why politicians of the old parties are widely ridiculed and despised, and why the electorate of Clacton will be returning the first UKIP MP next month. Just sayin'.

Still, the UK will also be represented by a group who purport to being in favour of e-cigs - they'll most certainly tell the WHO to butt out, won't they?

I won't hold my breath.


Lysistrata Eleftheria said...

OK, who the feck is Olddodderer or have I missed something here? As for the rest of your post I shall watch this space...

Legiron said...

Their quandary is that Electrofags contain only nicotine. That's the only 'tobacco product' in there. If they are classed as a tobacco product on that basis, then so are patches and gum.

So either the patches and gum get massive duty slapped on them too (on top of the already insane price of them) or they leave Electrofags alone.

I suspect the entire discussion will hinge on finding a way around that.

JonathanBagley said...

OD is a big name in ecig campaigning. For example, on the Ukvapers website. There is a company in the USA (google will eventually find it) which sells cartomisers, at the normal price, containing nicotine extracted from tomato stalks and leaves. So their products, at least, are nothing to do with tobacco or tobacco control.

Norbert Zillatron said...

The loophole it is already provided in the TPD. Anything that is already approved as "medicnal product" is exempt from the whole "regulation".

Moreover, ecigs are in a category (TITLE III) that is totally seperate from Tobacco Products /(TITLE II). So this implies, that ecigs are not tobacco products.

Besides originally TITLE III was explicitly "Non Tobacco Products".

Fun fact: Limiting this to ecigs (and herbal smokes) also means, that all other hypothetical nicotine containing products like nonmedicinal gums or beverages will remain as unregulated as ecigs have been.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Olddodderer asked the question, but it was more ASH's reply that I was highlighting.

Antipholus Papps said...

Is there no legal recourse for e-cig manufacturers to slap a lawsuit on these lying, racketeering arseholes?

Junican said...

This is where 'the iron triangle' (or quadrangle, or pentangle) comes in. the triangle in the UK is the Health Dept Officials, Big Pharma and the academics. The word 'iron' denotes the strength of the triangle. Ministers are putty when faced with the combined might of the three. The EU has its own triangle, being its non-elected self, big pharm and the academics. ASH has nothing to do with it. ASH is nothing but a cover for the academics and is just their propaganda machine. ASH is excluded, as are consumers.

Lysistrata Eleftheria said...

Thanks Jonathan.

Michael Bersil said...

From many days I was doing survey
on E-cigarettes vapor and I founds they do not cause any harm to human body and
even the person will not be addicted towards it.