The United Arab Emirates allows the sale of electronic cigarettes and vape devices.
The UAE is introducing rules to legalize the sale of electronic cigarettes and vape devices. Manufacturers will be allowed to sell battery-powered devices if they meet new standards and contain health warnings similar to traditional cigarettes. The Office of Standardization and Metrology (Esma) confirmed this information on Sunday.
Previously, local retailers could not sell electronic cigarettes, although storage and use did not violate the law. E-cigarettes are expected to go on sale in mid-April, officials said.
Abdullah Al Maini, Esma's CEO, said concerns about the proliferation of unregulated electronic cigarettes were one of the reasons for the change. Regulation of sales, in his opinion, will help ensure product quality and force retailers to report the health risks of smoking.
Authorities have not yet set the rules for cigarette purchases, but they are likely to have the same age restrictions as regular cigarettes. The same goes for taxes.
Earlier, a number of doctors expressed concern about the negative health effects of electronic cigarettes.
“We still don’t know everything about the long-term effects of vaping. It seems we are just replacing one bad habit with another,” says Dr. Fadi Baladi, head of the Burjeel Day Surgery Center in Abu Dhabi, “vaping can be less harmful than regular cigarettes but may still cause future health problems. "
“Vaping is less harmful than tobacco smoking, but we don’t know to what extent,” said Dr. Arun Arya, a pulmonologist at NMC Royal Hospital, “Particles inhaled by smoking electronic cigarettes are very small and they are absorbed into the lung tissue. . We cannot assess the damage in the long run. "