E-cigarette 18 age limit to be introduced
A restriction on the sale of E-cigarettes to those under 18 is expected to be passed by MSPs later.
The measure forms part of a Scottish Government health bill which will also restrict advertising on the products.
Electronic cigarettes produce a vapour which can contain high levels of nicotine without the tar of regular cigarettes. Evidence on the effects on ‘vaping’ on a user’s health is limited, but they have been proven as an effective way of encouraging people to quit smoking.
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There have been fears tobacco companies may see the products as a way to keep people addicted to nicotine.
Public Health Minister Maureen Watt said the new law would prevent children from becoming addicted.
"While they are almost certainly safer than cigarettes, and have a role to help people quit smoking, we don't want children to take them up, and that's why we are proposing these age restrictions,” she said.
Meanwhile EU diplomats yesterday agreed on plans which would see e-cigarettes taxed at a higher rate across Europe.
The trend has seen rapid growth, with around 2.2 million people thought to be using e-cigarettes in the UK.
The wide-ranging health bill also strengthens the ban on smoking on hospital grounds and introduces protection for patients who have been mistreated during care.