IBVTA Welcomes Consultation Period

/ 5 min read
IBVTA Welcomes Consultation Period

Since the announcements made by Rishi Sunak proposing changes to the legal smoking age and the vaping industry, many organizations have voiced either their praise or their concerns for the moves being made by the Prime Minster.

In this blog series, we have already looked at what the World Vapers Alliance’s thoughts were on the consultation period, with the suggested changes being opposed. However, the IBVTA issued their thoughts and they see the changes a bit differently and in a more positive light. Read on to find out more.

What Has Been Proposed

Stopping The Start is the name of the campaign to be initiated and proposals have been made relating to the restriction of certain vape products and focusing on enforcement to stop the importation and sale of illicit vaping products from being sold in shops across the country.

The IBVTA have welcomed these proposals by specifically giving their backing and support for further enforcement being put in place to stop the supply to underage users.

Illicit Tobacco & Vape Sales Are Proving Problematic

The importation and sale of tobacco via illicit methods has been an ongoing issue for many years and the cost of this to the economy is nothing short of astronomical.

It’s estimated that Tobacco smuggling costs over £2.8 BILLION in lost tax and duty revenue every single year. Tobacco smuggling is bringing in tobacco products via illegal methods and then they are sold on the ‘black market’ for heavily discounted prices compared to the RRP sold in a shop.

And in recent times, the illegal importation of Disposable Vapes has started seeing a rise also with these being openly sold in high street shops such as convenience stores, corner shops and even obscure shops such as American Sweet shops.

Boasting to contain 5ml of vape juice and 50mg in nicotine strength, the tell-tale signs of these being counterfeit are prominent and they are being sold to unknowing customers in abundance.

Meaning these shops are not only breaking the law of selling illicit vapes, but they’re also supplying them to underage users and with little consequence should they be caught which is what the Government intend on increasing.

How The Government Intend to Crack Down

The problems mentioned appear to be why Government has proposed the plans of regulation and enforcement to crack down on these issues once and for all.

The message from Rishi Sunak was clear during his reading of these proposals…

“A strong approach to enforcement”

Despite the hard work being put in by local trading standards authorities and border force agencies, this is all being severely undermined by the black-market activity that is happening on a frequent basis and at such high volumes also.

But the Government now feels it is time to act on these issues. Which is why they have made the following pledges on what they intend to do to crack down on the issues at hand:

  • Providing £30 million additional funding per year (from April 2024) to support enforcement agencies such as trading standards, Border Force and HMRC to implement and enforce the law (including enforcement of underage sales) and tackle illicit trade.
  • Introducing new powers for local authorities to issue on-the-spot fines (fixed penalty notices) to enforce age of sale legislation of tobacco products, as well as vapes.

 

IBVTA Chair Welcomes the Consultation Period

There’s been several responses to these proposals, with some against the proposals and classing them as a “threat to adult vapers” and it’s understandable why they feel like this.

But this isn’t the case for everyone, especially the IBVTA and their Chair Marcus Saxton. Here is what they had to say:

“We stand ready to work with the government on these issues and welcome the opening of this consultation which gives industry, as well as consumers and others, the chance to have their say.

Getting the policy right here is key to building a safe and sustainable industry that can continue to support smoking cessation across the UK. 

IBVTA members work daily with law enforcement to stop underage sales, and with public health teams in local authorities and NHS Trusts to deliver vaping as a tool for smoking cessation.

We will carefully consider our response to this consultation, with a focus on ensuring policy outcomes strike the right balance.”

Marcus has really driven home the importance of a consultation period here and what they are all about. It’s a chance for everyone whether it be industry or consumers to have their say on the proposals made by the Government.

It is crucial that the policy is done correctly as per his suggestion so it does not hinder or limit those who may be using E-Cigarettes as smoking cessation tools.

Restricting vape flavours could reduce the appeal to underage users and stopping the supply of Disposable Vapes would certainly stop underage users getting hold of them to use as they currently are.

Caution and care must be taken if introducing a regulation as strict as this, as statistics show a fair share of adult vapers use fruit flavoured vape juices, and even a small percentage of them are users of Disposable Vapes. Marcus is quoted to say the following which sums this up well:

“The risk is that policy goes too far and takes away a vital smoking cessation product when simply enforcing existing rules might be just as impactful.”

If you are wanting to take part in the consultation period and have your say, you can follow the link below to fill in the survey. It is a series of short questions which you can answer to share your views and thoughts.

Whether you feel strongly for or strongly against these proposals, now is the time to speak up and have your voice heard! Consultation period closes 6th December 2023 11:59pm

https://consultations.dhsc.gov.uk/en/65201ed1f3410a69990d3081

IBVTA Welcomes Consultation Period

Chair of the IBVTA Marcus Saxton has spoken out to show their support for the proposed regulations relating to enforcement of illicit vape sales here in the UK. We take a look at his response as well as how much black-market tobacco and vape sales are hurting the economy.