KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 19 — The vape e-liquids manufacturing industry in Malaysia is one of the largest in the world and can contribute significantly to the country's income, a local industry leader said.

In a statement today, Rustam Affendi Ismadi bin Rahimi, director of COF Industry Sdn Bhd, said the government should focus on developing the industry.

COF is one of the largest local vape e-liquids manufacturers and Rustam said many local manufacturers are recognised internationally as industry leaders.

“According to a research by Grand View Research, Inc, the global vape e-liquids market size is valued at US$1.4 billion (RM5.9 billion) in 2020 and is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 13.4 per cent from 2021 to 2027,” he said. 

As such, he added it was important that effective regulations are in place so the government can monitor the industry comprehensively.

The government had announced during the tabling of the 2021 Budget an excise tax on non-nicotine vape e-liquids at a rate of 40 sen per millilitre which was implemented in 2021.

“This move shows that the government is aware of the vape industry's growth. However, non-nicotine vape e-liquids only make up less than 10 per cent of the total products in the market.

“The government must also consider implementing taxation on vape e-liquids with nicotine and implement comprehensive regulations through a specific Bill. This can help the vape e-liquid manufacturing industry to grow at a positive rate,” he said.

At the same time, Rustam disagreed with a recent statement by a tobacco company that suggested the excise tax rate for vape products should be the same as that for cigarettes.

“The government must look into this matter from the point of view of developing the local industry as opposed to tax collection alone. Our country is known around the world as a producer of vape e-liquids, not devices.” 

“We hope that we have the opportunity to participate in discussions with the government to present the industry’s point of view. We do not want any party to take advantage of this situation,” he added.

Rustam added the success of the vape e-liquids manufacturing industry can indirectly help the country overcome unemployment rates which are growing due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The local vape industry involves approximately 3,300 businesses with a workforce of 15,000 employees. If this industry is given due attention, there will be more business opportunities which will lead to an increase in job opportunities.”