|TV2 went to a tobacco shop in Oslo selling e-juice... |
without nicotine of course, says the girl working there.
There is currently not much information available on the suggestion, but FRP writes on their web-page that it will be regulated by the current smoking laws, and that they're very happy with that:
"It makes control operations easier. Moreover, not everyone will notice whether you smoke a cigarette or vape on an e-cigarette. So it makes sense that e-cigarettes are regulated by the Tobacco Act", says Morten Wold, Member of Parliament from FRP.This probably means no vaping inside and so on, but also means it can be sold anywhere tobacco is sold. A very important issue is what will happen to our current import rules. If the opportunity to import e-juice for private use by ordering online is removed (we're not allowed to order tobacco or alcohol this way), we're suddenly much more limited in our choices and I fear prices will be a lot higher than today. I've found no information on any limit on nicotine strength yet either, but it would surprise me if they don't look at the TPD for this. So even if the ban on nicotine e-juice is lifted we still have a long way to go, and some battles to fight.
"We have repeatedly proposed to repeal the ban on the sale of e-cigarettes because these are far less harmful than regular cigarettes. E-cigarettes may represent a harm reducing alternative for smokers. Therefore it has been important for FRP to facilitate access to these products", says WoldAs you can see, they are all for harm reduction and seem to understand that this is they way to fight tobacco, and therefore wants to facilitate access to e-cigarettes. However, regulating this under the Tobacco Act is not exactly how I would have started out to facilitate access. Also, facilitating access is great, but you also need to think about facilitating usage, making e-cigarettes a more attractive alternative for smokers. If these politicians really understand the concepts of harm reduction, it is obvious that some education is needed to make sure they regulate this the right way.
A request for comments to the suggestion will be sent out today. Høyre and FRP needs support from some of the other government parties for the suggestion to become reality, so we're not sure this will become reality yet. We'll just have to wait and see how this turns out. There is still a lot of questions as well, and not much information on how regulation will be done, but I do believe vapers in Norway will have to continue fighting for reasonable regulations. I'm kind of optimistic, but I do feel it's quite weird to see a representative from FRP making so much sense, almost hard to believe ... that's enough about my political views for now:) I'll try my best to keep you guys updated on this.
UPDATE: This turned out to be the government preparing to implement TPD and kill vaping as we know it.