Vapers in Malaysia may be out of luck if the government takes the advice of a local Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) that has suggested a ban on vaping products.
The group, the Malaysian Malay businessmen and Industrialists Association, have passed on a recommendation to the government that all vaping products should be banned, at least until a comprehensive study can prove that they pose absolutely no danger of harm.
Malaysia, like many countries around the world, is currently considering the potential for vaping in terms of how it may help with smoking cessation, but also the potential for such products to be harmful.
This NGO suggestion has come amid arguments throughout Malay politics about whether or not the hobby should be banned in the country.
The Higher Education Minister, Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh, has already ensured that vaping won’t be allowed on university campuses in the same way that combustibles are.
“Although some of the VCs had made their own announcements on banning vape within the confines of their campuses, I feel a joint decision is very apt because universities are green zones… before we only banned smoking of tobacco but now we are extending it to vape as well,” he explained.
Meanwhile, the Minister for Rural and Regional Development has been campaigning on the side of the vapers, citing a British study that showed e-cigarettes to have just 5 per cent of the risk you get from combustibles, and mentioning that vaping is used as a tool for smoking cessation in other places.
It has been reported that there are already 1 million vapers in Malaysia, and if the numbers from other countries are anything to go by, this will only be set to rise further. Hopefully, the country will find a way to see that vaping really is a healthier alternative to combustible cigarettes, and will allow the practice in future.