The new ordinance bans the importation, sale, manufacture, display or advertising of vaping and heated tobacco products and their components. However individuals in possession of special government permits will be exempted. Violators may face fines of between NT$10,000 (US$354) and NT$100,000 and unless they rectify their offence within the set time period, they may face a second fine and suspension order.
The legislation also sets in place an age limit, prohibiting people who are under the age of 18, from using e-cigarettes and heated tobacco products. Any minors caught using the products will be forced to attend smoking cessation classes, or pay fines of between NT$2,000 and NT$10,000.
The Taipei City Council is also currently reviewing a similar measure, which is expected to clear the council floor in the coming days.
A proposed amendment to the national Tobacco Hazards Prevention Act
On a national level, the Ministry of Health and Welfare of Taiwan, has proposed a draft amendment, to the Tobacco Hazards Prevention Act seeking to raise the legal tobacco age limit for from 18 to 20. The amendment would also introduce such restrictions on non-combustible tobacco products, such as vaping products.
National data from 2018 had indicated that approximately 4 out of 10 young vapers used flavoured products, with the flavours being more popular among girls. According to the Health Promotion Administration (HPA), last year a total of 81,000 teenagers reported started smoking by being lured to flavoured products first, as they are perceived as less harmful.
To this effect, the HPA set restrictions on floral, fruity, chocolate, menthol flavours, and other additives in the proposed amendment to the Tobacco Hazards Prevention Act.