Indonesia pushes for e-cigarette ban over public health concern

Source: Xinhua| 2019-11-11 19:35:47|Editor: xuxin
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JAKARTA, Nov. 11 (Xinhua) -- The Indonesian Food and Drug Monitoring Agency (BPOM) has submitted a proposal to amend the existing law in a bid to push for permanent ban on use of e-cigarette and vape in the country.

Citing the hazardous substances, including propylene glycol, flavor, metals, carbonyl emission, tobacco specific nitrosamines (TSNAs) and diethylene glycol (DEG) contained in the two cigarette-substitutes, BPOM Chairperson Penny Lukito said that e-cigarette and vape are apparently risking the health of their consumers.

"So we need the legal basis. Without it, we cannot control and forbid their distribution. The legal basis should be from the revised Government Regulation No. 109/2012," she said on Monday, referring to the existing regulation on tobacco products and addictive substance distribution.

She also denied the claims conveyed by an Indonesian vape consumer association that e-cigarette and vape are safer products to replace cigarette consumption.

Lukito said that there has been no recommendation from the World Health Organization (WHO) on the use of the two addictive items as a therapy to quit smoking.

According to the Indonesian Personal Vaporizer Association (APVI), Indonesia has around a million active users of e-cigarette and vape.

The ban on e-cigarette and vape consumption use has also been suggested by the Indonesian Medical Association (IDI) following the finding of two patients with acute lung problems related to the use of the two items in the country.

"The use of e-cigarette and vape may increase the risk for cardiovascular diseases by 56 percent, risk for stroke by 30 percent and cardiac problems by 10 percent," IDI said in a statement earlier.

Besides those risks, active uses of e-cigarette and vape may eventually exacerbate liver, kidney and immunity system, IDI said, adding that brain problems could also happen among adolescent users.

Indonesia's health policy to ban the use of e-cigarette and vape has made the country among those considering do so after Turkey, South Korea, India, Thailand and the United States following health cases and deaths reported from the consumption of two addictive items.

In the United States, 19 deaths and around 1,000 others suffering from lung injuries were reported to have linked with vaping habit.