Britain said on Sunday it would ban the sale of electronic cigarettes to children aged under 18, citing possible adverse health effects and outlining a need for further medical research. E-cigarettes, which are puffed like a regular cigarette but deliver nicotine by vaporising liquid rather than burning tobacco, have grown in popularity and some analysts predict the market could outpace conventional cigarettes within a decade.
She added that e-cigarettes can produce toxic chemicals and that variations in the strength of the nicotine solutions between different products meant they could end up being “extremely damaging” to young people’s health.
The changes will be written into a bill already on its way through parliament and are expected to have cross-party support, although the opposition Labour party criticised the government for not acting more quickly.
The battery-powered metal tubes of e-cigarettes are seen as less harmful than regular cigarettes and a useful way to wean smokers off their habits. Critics, however say they can act as a gateway to nicotine addiction and that more research is needed on the health implications.
Regulators in Europe and the United States have been debating policy towards the industry. TheEuropean Union reached an agreement in December to allow e-cigarettes to be sold as consumer products rather than more tightly regulated medical devices.
source: voice of russia