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Russia is considering banning the sale of cigarettes to anyone born after 2015.
This move is an attempt to eventually make Russia tobacco-free.
The Russian Health Minister has announced that he is considering banning cigarettes to anyone born after 2015. This would make Russia the first country to take such a large step against tobacco use.
Russia and Tobacco
Russia has been tolerant of smoking for a long time and the first public restriction it enforced on tobacco was only in 2013.
However, since then legislation that has been introduced has been considerably harsher.
There have also been concerns that “fake tobacco” is being sold on the black market, making smoking an even larger health risk in Russia according to officials.
According to Tass news agency, Russia has already seen a drop of 10 percent of the smoking population in 2016- dropping from 41 percent to just 31 percent of the total population.
This marks the country’s lowest rate of smokers in history. According to a Russian expert, if planned measures go smoothly, this percentage will be dropping to just 5 percent in 2030.
“The law provides for a ban on advertising and sponsorship, and imposes restrictions on smoking in public places. Experts believe that the smoking ban in public places has made the biggest contribution to Russia’s falling tobacco consumption rate. That is why we are very cautious about the appearance of electronic cigarettes,” said a health ministry official.
Many people in Russia, even among the proposal’s advocates, are doubtful of the practicality of any law that enforces a ban on selling to an entire generation of people.
A Kremlin(the White House of Russia) spokesman said careful and serious consideration and consultation with other ministries would be required for such a ban. Many also worry of the response of tobacco companies.
However, many still maintain that the proposal is a good idea. According Nikolai Gerasimenko, a member of Russian parliament’s health committee said: “This goal is absolutely ideologically correct.”
Could the Russian government be any more disconnected from the ideals of the common man?
Russia is not the USA
This proposal, while incredibly harsh, is happening in a place completely foreign and independent of the law makers here in our own country. Unfortunately with the shrinking of our small world due to the internet and instantaneous exchange of information on a global scale, this idea is inevitably going to spread. Is combustible tobacco an endangered species? With the FDA classifying Vaping as a tobacco product (although most E-Juice contains no tobacco) will this idea half way around the world lead to even more restrictions on our beloved E-Cigs? Only time will tell and we here at Vaping Industries will be watching these events unfold as they happen.