Pasir Mas MP Slams 'Hasty' Liquid Nicotine Delisting – CodeBlue

Pasir Mas MP Ahmad Fadhli Shaari urges the government to reconsider the exemption of liquid nicotine from the Poisons List pending passage of the tobacco & vape bill, saying he is sure that Health Minister Dr Zaliha Mustafa also agrees with him on this.
KUALA LUMPUR, April 3 — Pasir Mas MP Ahmad Fadhli Shaari today questioned the declassification of liquid nicotine as a controlled substance before the passage of the tobacco bill in Parliament.
The second-term PAS MP from Perikatan Nasional (PN) pointed out that the only legal control over the vape industry that has flourished in the country for years was the classification of nicotine as a Class C poison under the Poisons Act 1952 that could only be dispensed by medical practitioners or pharmacists – until the exemption of liquid nicotine from the poisons schedule last March 31.
“I think this is a rather hasty decision by the government. This is not an issue about why it needs to be removed, but the most basic issue is: why was it removed in a rushed manner? What is the government’s mechanism to control vape products in the market?” Ahmad Fadhli told the Dewan Rakyat today while debating the Finance Bill 2023.
Alluding to the previous government’s decision under Budget 2022 to impose excise duty on e-liquids with nicotine at RM1.20 per ml, Ahmad Fadhli pointed out that this must be seen in relation to the Ismail Sabri Yaakob administration’s efforts to introduce the Control of Tobacco Product and Smoking Bill 2022 that included the generational end game (GEG) provision to ban smoking and vaping for anyone born after 2007. 
“Meaning, there is a control mechanism that has been put in place by the previous government, not hastily and recklessly,” said the PAS lawmaker.
“So, I hope that as soon as this decision can be reviewed by the health community – and I’m sure the health minister also agrees with me – that this decision to remove vape liquid needs to be reexamined because it is seen as a hasty decision without introducing controls for vape products.”
The previous government did not put into effect taxation on e-liquids containing nicotine – pending passage of the tobacco bill – because it kept liquid nicotine in the Poisons List. 
However, the current government led by Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim exempted liquid nicotine from control under the Poisons Act to put into effect excise duty at 40 sen per ml on e-liquids with nicotine from last April 1.
This effectively legalised e-cigarettes and vape without any regulation in place, as the current Control of Tobacco Products Regulations 2004 under the Food Act 1983 only covers conventional cigarettes and other tobacco products.
Currently, Malaysia has no regulations on vape or e-cigarettes with nicotine, such as restrictions on sale to minors under 18; restrictions on ingredients, nicotine content, or volume of e-liquids for sale; labelling requirements and warnings; or bans on advertising, promotion, and sponsorship.
Health Minister Dr Zaliha Mustafa had exercised her ministerial powers to exempt liquid nicotine from the Poisons List, overriding the Poisons Board’s unanimous rejection of the government’s proposal.
Ahmad Fadhli’s call for the government to review the declassification of liquid nicotine followed a similar statement by Umno Youth chief Dr Akmal Saleh, who urged the government to review or retract the decision pending passage of the tobacco bill.
“Rationally, the government should first enforce the GEG law before removing tobacco liquids and gels from the Poisons Act,” Dr Akmal, who is also the Merlimau assemblyman and former Melaka state executive councillor in charge of health, said in a statement yesterday.
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