factasia calls on regulators and legislators to adopt more reasoned and informed positions on less harmful products. Regulators and legislators must drop their emotional or ideological opposition in favour of evidence-based policies in accordance with the aims of improving public health.
In most countries across Asia-Pacific, governments continue to tax cigarettes in punitive fashion while preventing legal access to alternatives – banning much safer, proven products such as e-cigarettes, without reference to science, experts, voters or common sense.
But in Europe and in many states in the US, a more enlightened approach has seen millions of adults switch – partially or entirely – away from smoking.
Respected and independent expert organisations (eg Public Health England and the Royal Society for Public Health) now actually recommend vaping (as the use of e-cigarettes is usually known) as a safer means of stopping smoking.
The arguments put forward by public health authorities in this region for continuing to ignore all evidence are neither convincing nor in the interests of the citizens and voters they serve.