Disposable Vapes to be Banned in NI
Disposable vapes are set to be banned as part of plans to tackle the rising number of young people taking up vaping, the government says.
Department of Health in NI opens consultation to follow UK-wide ban plans.
Measures will also be introduced to prevent vapes being marketed at children and to target under-age sales.
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak suggested adult smokers trying to quit would still have access to alternatives like vapes under the proposals.
The ban is expected to be introduced across the UK, the government said.
It is already illegal to sell any vape to anyone under 18, but disposable vapes – often sold in smaller, more colourful packaging than refillable ones – are a “key driver behind the alarming rise in youth vaping”, according to the government.
Forecourt retailers warn that the ban on disposable vapes announced today could boost the black market for unregulated devices, simply driving the problem underground.
A statement from the Department of Health ‘notes the UK Government’s plans to enable NI to legislate to increase the smoking age and to introduce measures aimed at reducing youth vaping, subject to Northern Ireland Assembly agreement.
‘In accordance with the provisions that are available, the Department will make the necessary preparations to allow incoming Ministers and the NI Assembly to take a decision on introducing the regulations in Northern Ireland.’
The announcement follows the publication of the outcome of the UK-wide consultation ‘Creating a smoke free generation and tackling youth vaping’. The consultation closed on 6 December and received 27,921 responses, including more than 1,200 from NI. The consultation report shows strong support for the proposed measures across the UK and particularly in Northern Ireland.