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China to Regulate Smoking, Vaping Amid New Focus on Public Health

By Zhao Runhua / Jul 23, 2019 05:49 PM / Politics & Law

Photo: VCG

Photo: VCG

China’s National Health Commission has said it’s planning new regulations on tobacco and e-cigarettes, state-run news agency Xinhua reported Tuesday, amid a heightening official focus on the public’s lifestyle habits.

Mao Qun’an, the commission’s planning chief, said during a Monday media briefing in Beijing that the government is mulling over a rise in tobacco taxes and fees, without giving further details.

Additionally, the commission is considering tougher rules on e-cigarettes, Mao said, adding that the alleged health risks of smoking them — a practice known as vaping — had received the Chinese government’s “intense awareness.” In addition to recent product safety issues, e-cigarettes contain a number of harmful ingredients that can get young people addicted to nicotine and therefore require strict state governance, Mao said.

Young people constituted the “main consumers” of e-cigarettes in China last year, particularly those aged between 15 and 24 years old, according to a report published by the country’s top organization for disease control and prevention. The report did not mention specific data.

Contact reporter Zhao Runhua (runhuazhao@caixin.com)

Related: Hong Kong Considers E-Cigarette Ban

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