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REGULATION OF VAPE PRODUCTS BILL GETS BICAM OK

A Bicameral Conference Committee of the House of Representatives and the Senate on Wednesday approved the bicam report on the disagreeing provisions of House Bill 9007 and Senate Bill 2239, which would regulate the importation, manufacture, sale, packaging, distribution, use, and communication of vaporized nicotine and non-nicotine products, as well as novel tobacco products.

This was after an extensive deliberation by the House contingent led by Deputy Speaker Wes Gatchalian and the Senate panel headed by Senate President Pro Tempore Senator Ralph Recto, who ensured that recommendations made by concerned agencies and stakeholders were incorporated in the bicam report.

During the hybrid conference meeting, House Deputy Speaker Rufus Rodriguez stressed that the measure aims to offer an alternative for Filipinos who want to quit smoking.

“While Congress intends to push for the shift from smoking to vaping, the bill does not back its promotion as a lifestyle.”

Recto noted that while Congress intends to push for the shift from smoking to vaping, the bill does not back its promotion “as a lifestyle”.

Posts, messages, or images by manufacturers, importers, distributors, and retailers that encourage the purchase and use of vape products would be prohibited.

With this, posts, messages, or images by manufacturers, importers, distributors, and retailers that encourage the purchase and use of vape products would be prohibited.

Additionally, the Department of Health would be tasked to prescribe guidelines on the implementation of smoking and vaping restriction awareness campaigns.

As for the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), it would consult with the Food and Drug Administration in setting technical standards for the safety, consistency, and quality of the vape products.

Manufacturers, distributors, importers, and sellers would then be given an 18-month transitory period from the issuance of the implementing rules and regulations to comply with the requirements of this measure.

This would include the registration of the vape products with the DTI.

The report would now be up for ratification by both the House and the Senate when sessions resume.

Other House Members present were Deputy Speaker Kristine Singson-Meehan and Representatives Sharon Garin, Estrellita Suansing, Stella Luz Quimbo, and Alfredo Garbin Jr.

The Senate panel was also joined by Majority Leader Migz Zubiri and Minority Leader Franklin Drilon.

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