Last May 20, the customers of the British manufacturers Cuts Ice, owner of the e-liquid brands T-Juice (among which the best-seller Red Astaire), Halcyon Haze and 13 Sins, were concerned when their favorite brands published the online warning: “The TPD does not allow us to deliver our product to UE customers, except in the England. We are saddened by this decision that will last until further notice“.
Nigel Quine, Director General of Cuts Ice, clarified the situation. “A misunderstanding occurred after on post of Facebook. Sales via our retailers is not concerned. Only the sale to our customers outside England is suspended via our website.”
Companies unable to register
Why did Cuts Ice decide so? “Except in the UK, most EU Member States have not yet set up online registration facility for companies. Finally, last Tuesday, MHRA confirmed us to proceed with sales as usual until the different Member States have set up registration portals“.
In France, vaping professionals wait with hopeful anticipation
In France, the situation is even more chaotic. Amande Valladier, Manager of the website Myfree-cig.com, which makes 50% of its turnover with abroad sales, has no view in the short term. “We are in fuzziness. We know we will have to notify but nothing comes out to inform us how to do so. Right now, we continue our business with foreign customers, the most important thing is to obtain more details on procedures“. It is quite logical that all the perspectives of this professional are in stand-by. To try to anticipate, Amande Valladier and her team mutiply brainstorming sessions. “Contradictory information comes to us and heavily weight on our activity. Different management scenarios are developed to quickly adapt”, she says.
From Boro2 side, it is the same story. Flustered, its ower Olivier Médina declared: “We do not change the way to proceed. A 15-page ordinance has been released on May 19, and since then, nobody is able to answer our questions. We will meet with the Fivape on June 6 to get more insights“.
The Fivape: “A transitional setting-up period”
Since the first Vape Summit, Jean Moiroud, President of the Fivape, is in touch with the Directorate General of Health (DGS). He temporizes: “Until January, we need to consider being in a transitional period (…) so does the government. I do not imagine the Directorate General of Competition, Consumption and Fraud enter in action before this date. The objective for professionals is to comply with the regulations before this date. Do not forget that the legislation would last between 7 and 9 years, so if the law is rather pro-competitive, it will be positive.”
EU TPD’s Article 18: Cross-border distance sales of tobacco products
Tobacco products and vaping product must follow the same rules, in Europe.
- It is up to each individual Member State to decide whether cross-border distance sales are legal or not.
- Retail outlets intending to engage in cross-border distance sales cannot sell products in a Member State that prohibits such products.
- Member States which do not prohibit such sales shall require retail outlets intending to engage in cross-border distance sales to consumers located in the Union to register with the competent authorities in the Member State,
- where the retail outlet is established, and
- where the actual or potential consumers are located.
- Retail outlets may only start placing tobacco products on the market via cross-border distance sales when they have received confirmation of their registration with the relevant competent authority.