The European Commission is planning to ban vaping in public places as part of a push to ensure that only 5pc of the EU’s population uses tobacco by 2040.
Plans for stricter rules for new smoking products such as e-cigarettes or heated tobacco products were revealed in a leaked draft about a European strategy to beat cancer.
Under the proposals the EU would also stop public money being used to promote red and processed meat, and cancel subsidies to market alcohol.
Michael Landl, the director of the World Vapers’ Alliance, said the plan would “botch a historic opportunity for Europe”.
“The UK and other countries have demonstrated that vaping can help millions of smokers quit,” he said.
“Vaping is not the same as smoking and treating the two as the same is a mistake that could prevent thousands of smokers from quitting.”
The plan cites research that tobacco is the leading preventable cause of cancer, with 27pc of all cancers attributed to tobacco use. By eliminating it, 90pc of lung cancers could be avoided, it suggests.
The commission is considering updating EU recommendations on smoke-free environments by 2023 to include “emerging products, such as e-cigarettes”. The recommendations call on member states to ban smoking in public places, workplaces and public transport.
The EU would also impose existing minimum taxation rates on tobacco to novel tobacco products, according to the draft.
The paper pledges to overhaul existing EU tobacco laws to make smoking and vaping less attractive to young people, including by enforcing rules on plain packaging, a ban on flavours, and tackling online and social media advertising.
The draft plan, first reported by the EurActiv website, said some measures could be taken this year. (© Telegraph Media Group Limited 2021)
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