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02 May 2017, 16:01

Lukashenko supports proposal to equate electronic cigarettes with tobacco products

MINSK, 2 May (BelTA) – Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko has supported the proposal to equate electronic cigarettes with tobacco products, Head of the Department for the Organization of Trade and Services at the Antimonopoly Regulation and Trade Ministry Violetta Berezovskaya told reporters after the session held by the head of state on 2 May to discuss the improvement of legal regulation in separate sectors of the Belarusian economy, BelTA informs.

The session focused on the draft decree concerning the state regulation in the sale of tobacco and electronic smoking products. Taking into account the fact that they are similar in terms of consumption and effect, plans have been made to apply the same regulations to them.

“The main innovation is that we equate the sale and consumption of e-cigarettes and e-liquids with that of tobacco products,” Violetta Berezovskaya explained. “This issue is not regulated in our country yet. We see that electronic smoking devises gain popularity, therefore a decision was made to apply the same restrictions and norms to electronic cigarettes as we use in relation to tobacco products.”

Plans have been made to ban the advertizing of e-cigarettes and the sale of these products to people under 18. Besides, special places where it will be allowed to sell e-cigarettes will be determined. Starting from 2021, plans have been made to ban the use of equipment above cash registers in shops for the storage and sale of tobacco products. As a result, children will not see cigarette packages when buying other products, the expert explained.

The ministry deems it necessary to ban smoking on beaches, in elevators and cars in the presence of children under 14.

The president urged to finalize these norms taking into account the public opinion, introduce effective mechanisms to ensure compliance with the legislation.

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