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HOMENEWS & STORIES

7 Recommendations for the Portuguese Government to Reduce Smoking Rates

World Vapers’ Alliance presents a 7-step plan for Portugal to combat cigarette consumption

LISBON, PORTUGAL, 10 November  — A global advocacy group for vapers’ rights, World Vapers’ Alliance (WVA), presented a 7-step plan for the Portuguese government to fight tobacco consumption.

As the forthcoming update of the EU Tobacco Products Directive and the implementation of the Portuguese Plan to reduce cancer (ENLCC) are set to determine the strategy to combat tobacco consumption in Portugal, WVA, together with their Portuguese partners Associação Portuguesa de Vaporizadores (APORVAP) and Ohms do Vapor presented a set of recommendations to political decision-makers on advancing harm reduction as a part of Portugal’s strategy to reduce cancer. 

The 7-step plan includes the following recommendations:

  1. Portugal’s clear commitment to the concept of tobacco harm reduction.
  2. Promoting vaping as a smoking cessation tool.
  3. Exclude vaping from smoke-free area restrictions.
  4. Abstain from imposing higher taxes on vaping products and reduce the excessive taxation on e-liquids as soon as possible.
  5. Reject flavour bans and not restrict choice in nicotine levels for vaping liquids.
  6. Keep vaping available for adults while enforcing age restrictions to prevent adolescent use.
  7. Promoting tobacco harm reduction in the EU institutions and legislations.

 

“Smoking is responsible for over 13,000 deaths in Portugal every year. Multiple ways have been effective in helping smokers quit, and vaping has proven to be the most successful tool so far. We need a modern, open regulatory framework to fit these alternatives to reduce cancer rates successfully. While the Portuguese government is designing the ENLCC strategy, we offer 7 comprehensive steps for the government to succeed in the fight against tobacco-induced cancer. Portugal can become a global tobacco harm reduction leader by implementing consumer-friendly vaping regulation,” said Michael Landl, director of World Vapers’ Alliance.

“Today, Portugal has the highest excise tax on e-liquids in Europe, which adds up to EUR 3.23 per 10ml liquid, and the government intends to increase this rate in 2023. Such taxation rules discourage consumers from purchasing e-liquids and, therefore, switch to less harmful alternatives than traditional smoking. Portugal needs a modern, risk-based tax regulation that will remove the burden from consumers and support Portuguese public health goals,” said Cristiano Batista, president of APORVAP.

Unfortunately, we see a lot of misconceptions about vaping and e-cigarettes among the media, policymakers, and health professionals. At Ohms do Vapor, we provide reliable information to the public about tobacco alternatives, but it is not enough. Portugal needs a country-wide educational campaign on the benefits of tobacco harm reduction if the government wants to achieve their set goals. The 7-step plan developed by WVA supports public awareness needs and should be taken into account by the government,” said Ohms do Vapor.

The 7-step plan reducing smoking rates in Portugal is a part of World Vapers’ Alliance’s Europe-wide campaign on harm reduction, #BackVapingBeatSmoking, previously launched in France, Poland, Czech Republic, and Italy. WVA is running a petition among the consumers to support harm reduction strategy in the upcoming review of the Tobacco Products Directive, which will be delivered to the Members of the European Parliament at the end of November. 

Learn more about the Back Vaping Beat Smoking campaign here.

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Vaping can save 200 million lives and flavours play a key role in helping smokers quit. However, policymakers want to limit or ban flavours, putting our effort to end smoking-related deaths in jeopardy.

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