Vapouround magazine VAPOUROUND MAGAZINE OCTOBER ISSUE19 - Page 21

NEWS GOVERNMENT HAS “NO CURRENT PLANS” TO LEVY ‘SIN TAX’ ON UK’S 3 M VAPERS TREASURY PRAISE FOR UK VAPE INDUSTRY, WHICH IT SAYS HAS ‘KEY ROLE’ TO PLAY IN HELPING SMOKERS QUIT BY PATRICK GRIFFIN The government has confirmed it has “no current plans” to add additional taxes to vape products despite national press reports to the contrary. The Sun newspaper speculated that adding a five percent ‘sin tax’ to e-liquid would bring in an extra £40 million to the treasury and cost the average vaper £13.75 a year. When the news broke an open letter was sent to Health Secretary Matt Hancock and Chancellor Philip Hammond urging the government not to tax vapers. The three-page letter, whose signatories included the UK Vaping Industry Association (UKVIA) and the New Nicotine Alliance (NNA), warned that a vape ‘sin tax’ would “undermine public health and be inconsistent with government policy.” It said: “The government must continue to support and stand-up for vaping as part of a joined-up and world- leading anti-smoking policy that embraces harm reduction and explicitly recognises the value vaping has in reducing smoking rates.” Now Robert Jenrick, the exchequer secretary to the Treasury, has replied to UKVIA director John Dunne to set out the government’s position. “We keep all taxes under review to ensure they are fair and efficient; however I can confirm that we have no current plans to introduce a new tax on vaping products. “Vaping products have a key role to play in reducing smoking and I recognise the contribution the vaping industry makes to the economy in terms of jobs and revenue to the exchequer and welcome the fact the UK has a world-leading vaping industry.” “VAPING IS A HUGE PUBLIC HEALTH OPPORTUNITY WHICH HAS ALREADY HELPED THREE MILLION SMOKERS QUIT AND SAVED THE NHS BILLIONS OF POUNDS.” A UKVIA spokesman said: “Vaping is a huge public health opportunity which has already helped three million smokers quit or reduce smoking and saved the NHS billions of pounds according to the government’s own research. “For the treasury to impose yet another tax on vaping, not only wouldn’t make sense, but it would be detrimental to the NHS and public health in the UK.” Earlier the IBVTA, in an article on its own website, said its sources in government had already confirmed that there were no plans for a vape ‘sin tax.’ The article said: “Contrary to the anonymous Whitehall sources cited by The Sun newspaper and others this past week, neither the Department for Health and Social care nor HM Treasury currently have plans to introduce a tax on vaping products. “The IBVTA are happy to be able to dispel the unease that our members and vapers may have felt while reading these news stories. “Thankfully, for now, this is not something the government has plans to introduce, but we will as always continue to fight against any introduction of so called ‘’sin taxes’’ on products which are helping people to stop smoking.” VM19 | 21