Vape is everywhere! Suddenly clouds of smoke with flavors are sold like 'goreng pisang'. It is now becoming a popular trend and has left conventional cigarettes behind.
Recently, the Malaysian government decided not to ban e-cigarettes and vaporisers themselves but, under the Poisons Act in Malaysia, the sale of nicotine liquid which goes inside them. The Act uses the term 'substance', prohibiting any such poison from being sold or supplied to any person under 18 years of age, other than for the purposes of the medical treatment of such person.
Therefore, this can cover the liquid but not the device itself.
When it comes to vapes, the heater vaporizes liquid nicotine in a small cartridge but users can opt for a cartridge without nicotine. Therefore, for any person under 18, vape is actually legal as long it has no nicotine inside!
Apart from that, while Malaysia has its legal provisions for smoking tobacco indoors under the Food Act 1983, vaping does not involve the use of tobacco at all. The Food Act 1983 – defines “tobacco product” as “tobacco, cigarette or cigar or any other form of tobacco including any mixture containing tobacco which is designed for human consumption...” and “tobacco” as any product obtained from the leaf of the Nicotiana Tobacum plant or other related plants and includes any tobacco product.
So, it is actually legal for a person to vape indoors.
In addition, as the Control of Tobacco Product (Amendment) Regulations 2013 just provides regulations such as the ban on advertisement, prohibition of sales to minors, as well as prohibition of consumption at certain areas, we could see adverts for vape on TV.
After all, the Act only permits the health ministry to set regulations on the use of tobacco products which includes its advertisement, packaging and but not vaping.
So, all the debate about vaping, whether it is illegal or not, comes down to this one thing. If you're above 18, you can vape any time and anywhere you like. Nicotine included.
(Point of consideration - establishments that have a self-implemented policy. We'll touch on this in our next piece.)