Portugal Undermines Smoking Cessation Efforts With New Vape Restrictions

While a set of sensible vape regulations were already in place, the Portuguese Government may be taking it a step to far with the newly proposed restrictions.

The new draft law No. 88/XV seeks to extend smoke-free area restrictions to vaping products, hence prohibiting vaping in outdoor spaces where smoking is not allowed. Tobacco harm reduction (THR) experts argue that such measures undermine efforts by former smokers who have turned to vapes in order to quit smoking. The proposed bill also aims to impose stricter regulations on the sale of vaping products, including a ban on online sales.

A GSTHR facts page reveals that there are approximately 8,300 vapers in Portugal. Until now, nicotine vapes had been permitted, resulting in an adult vaping prevalence of 0.09%. The products had already been regulated with sales limited to individuals aged 18 and above, packaging requiring health warnings and specific requirements with regards to nicotine content.

Moreover, while one can buy vapes without a prescription, there are already restrictions in place with regards to using them in public spaces. Vaping in indoor public spaces and certain outdoor areas had been banned to protect non-users from second hand vapour. While, advertising and promoting vaping products have been subject to limitations in order to prevent their appeal to young people.

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O vaping pode salvar 200 milhões de vidas e os sabores desempenham um papel fundamental para ajudar os fumantes a parar de fumar. No entanto, os formuladores de políticas querem limitar ou banir os sabores, colocando em risco nosso esforço para acabar com as mortes relacionadas ao tabagismo.

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