KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 1 — Groups representing e-cigarette or “vape” traders today launched an initiative to urge the federal government to introduce regulations in relation to the sale and use of nicotine vape in Malaysia.
According to the Malaysian Vape Chamber of Commerce (MVCC), Malaysia E-Vaporisers and Tobacco Alternative Association (Mevta), the initiative — dubbed #vapeterkawal or #vapecontrol — was a nationwide petition to showcase the support from all stakeholders in a clarion call to push for regulations governing the industry.
“#vapeterkawal is not only an initiative by the industry to ask the Government to regulate the sale and use of nicotine vape in Malaysia.
“It is also a reflection of our industry’s readiness and willingness to comply with the regulations being introduced,” Mevta president Rizani Zakaria was quoted saying in a joint statement with MVCC.
Rizani said through proper government regulations, the industry would be able to have a clearer direction in moving forward to facilitate the growth of local entrepreneurs and create job opportunities for Malaysian citizens which could ultimately contribute to the nation’s economy.
He said the industry, estimated to be valued at RM2 billion, was firmly in the government’s hand as it awaits further regulations.
In August, both groups had called upon the Health Ministry to set regulations to govern the industry, especially regarding online sales to minors.
MVCC president Syed Azaudin Syed Ahmad said the industry had been anticipating further regulations following announcement from the previous government since 2015.
“Currently, existing regulations for the sale and use of nicotine vape need to take into account the direction of the industry at large.
“Regulations imposed on nicotine vape are more stringent than cigarettes, which contain nicotine and have been proven to be much more dangerous,” he said.
Yesterday, Deputy Health Minister Dr Lee Boon Chye said the composition of e-liquid or vape juice and its sale are among aspects taken into account in the drafting of the law to regulate e-cigarettes or vaping.
He said this was to ensure the vape juice is not mixed with other chemicals and its sale to be restricted to adults only.
Following the launch, both Mevta and DPVM have pledged to embark on a nationwide awareness campaign aimed at encouraging industry stakeholders to play a more proactive role in stopping the use of vape amongst the underage.