The European Parliament Environment Committee today held a single vote on the Tobacco Products Directive, which includes stricter measures to regulate the sale of tobacco such as a ban on flavourings and restrictions on packaging, as well as proposals to regulate electronic cigarettes as consumer products. Liberal Democrat MEPs Rebecca Taylor and Chris Davies both abstained on the vote.
Commenting, Liberal Democrat MEP Rebecca Taylor said:
“I could not support the whole package today because I still have serious concerns in relation to the final text of the legislation on e-cigarettes (article 18), which I find far too restrictive.”
“In particular, I find the 20mg limit and the potential for a future ban on refillable devices deeply worrying, as these could lead many e-cig users to switch back to harmful tobacco cigarettes.”
“However, I have always supported measures that will reduce the appeal of tobacco, especially for young people, and discourage them from starting smoking in the first place, and for that reason I decided to abstain in today’s vote.”
“Liberal Democrats have not given up the fight for sensible regulation of e-cigarettes. I am currently verifying European Parliament procedural rules to ascertain what further action can be taken. As I have always argued, it would have been far better to have created bespoke regulation for e-cigarettes rather than shoehorn them into legislation intended to regulate tobacco products, but we are where we are.”
“I look forward to working with like-minded groups to see how we can achieve a better outcome for e-cig users, while maintaining measures to reduce the appeal of harmful tobacco products.”