The Australian Government has confirmed it will outlaw the sale of e-cigarette products in the country.
The announcement comes after the US state of Vermont, which has seen more than 600,000 people use e-cigs, banned the devices.
The US Department of Health and Human Services has also announced it is looking at e-cig regulations.
A statement released by Health Minister Jill Hennessy said it would take into account the potential harms of vaping, including the “imminent harm to public health and public safety” that could result.
“E-cigarettes are currently a rapidly evolving product that can have significant risks and risks to health and wellbeing, particularly among youth, who may be particularly vulnerable to the harmful effects of tobacco,” the statement said.
“The Australian Government will be taking appropriate action to ensure that vaping remains a safe, healthy, and legal activity.”
E-cigarette use has been growing rapidly in Australia, with a 2015 survey revealing that 18 per cent of Australians said they had tried an e-liquor product.
In response to the announcement, the Australian Vaping Association said it was concerned about the announcement.
“We’re concerned that the government is looking to criminalise an entirely new industry,” the association’s general secretary, Andrew Dix, said.
“It’s a big step backwards.”
Eighty per cent said they would stop vaping if e-targets were restrictedThe Australian Vapers Association has also urged the Government to “stop the rush to ban and regulate” the products.
“Vaping is a growing, socially responsible, and safe activity that’s proven to be effective at reducing harm from tobacco use and other forms of harm,” a statement said on the association website.
“For more than a decade, the Vapers’ Association has campaigned against the harmful and regressive policies that are driving tobacco use to an unprecedented level.”
By banning the use of e cigs, we will be able to stop the government and the Australian public from rushing to ban the vaping industry and making an industry that is so popular and so safe.