Australia’s largest vaping advocacy body slams the Government’s special deal for Big Tobacco
News that the global tobacco giant Phillip Morris International has been secretly invited to submit an application to the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) to register their electronic cigarette product is bad news for Australian vape consumers and smokers wishing to switch to vaping.
Public health experts have been concerned for some time that Health Minister Greg Hunt’s stupid and illogical insistence that vaping products would need to be approved by the TGA was always intended to benefit Big Tobacco against smaller independent vape product manufacturers.
LVA Campaign Director Brian Marlow said today was a sad day for Australian vapers and was a very dark day for hundreds of vape retailers and manufacturers across Australia who have developed their own perfectly safe vape products, but do not have the millions of dollars required to go through the TGA process that Greg Hunt is demanding.
“This is a retrograde move orchestrated by our Federal Government and is designed to protect Big Tobacco and kill off Australia’s rapidly growing vaping industry which is made up of small family retail businesses and highly innovative and world-leading e-liquid manufacturers.”
“Australia’s 300,000 vapers and 2.6 million smokers should not be forced to access just one TGA approved nicotine vaping product owned by a multinational tobacco company, but they should have the freedom to purchase one of the many hundreds of combinations of available vaping products that suits them and helps them quit smoking.”
“It is now patently clear that everything Greg Hunt has said and done as Health Minister has been to serve the interests of Big Tobacco and to kill off Australia’s independent vape sector.
“Every time Greg Hunt and various health bureaucrats attack vaping, they end up defending the financial interests of companies like Philip Morris. This latest decision to give Phillip Morris, a multinational, multi-billion dollar tobacco giant a free pass on electronic cigarettes while punishing smaller independent vape manufacturers is simply unacceptable. It is pure corporatism, and should be labelled as such.”
“There needs to be a fair go for vapers. If there are going to be any moves to legalise heated tobacco, then it stands to reason that all appropriately manufactured vaping products should be legalised too.”
Vapers and vape retailers need to send the government a message that their dodgy deal with PMI is not okay. It will cost Australian jobs and hurt the Australian Vaping community that’s made up of small family run businesses.