Nicotine ban in vaping to stay

man with e-cigarette in one hand and six cigarettes in the other

The TGA has announced the current ban on nicotine in e-cigarettes will remain in place

An applicant had proposed that nicotine should be exempt from Schedule 7 at concentrations of 3.6% or less for self-administration via e-cigarette, for the purposes of reducing harms caused by smoking tobacco.

The applicant had stated that tobacco harm reduction provides an alternative pathway for smokers who are unable or unwilling to quit nicotine.

The ACCS-ACMS advised that the current scheduling of nicotine remains appropriate, however, due to factors including the risk of nicotine dependence associated with delivery via vaping, lack of evidence regarding safety of long-term exposure via the devices, and the risk that inappropriate marketing and advertising, including to under-18s, would follow a reschedule.

Simon Chapman, Emeritus Professor at the Sydney School of Public Health, University of Sydney, welcomed the decision.

“Australians have relied on the TGA scientific umpires to make decisions on the safety and effectiveness of drugs for decades,” he says.

“We have among the best drug regulation systems in the world and I’ve full confidence in the process.

“In light of recent evidence, the WHO’s international Agency for Research in Cancer has named nicotine as high priority for carcinogenic assessment.

“The recent US Surgeon General’s report on e-cigarettes listed serious concerns about nicotine and adolescent brain development.”

Against that background, the TGA’s decision is commendable, Prof Chapman says.

“Australia has one of the lowest rates of smoking among adults and youth of any nation. It has been falling almost continually since the 1960s, and especially since the 1980s.

“This has been achieved without e-cigarettes.

“The tobacco industry will unanimously condemn this decision. This is all anyone needs to know about why it should be welcomed.”

Previous NSAIDs still suitable, says ASMI
Next Cost a barrier to scripts for 1.8 million

NOTICE: It can sometimes take awhile for comment submissions to go through, please be patient.


  1. Matty P

    The TGA had used the Royal College of Physicians medical evidence on all of its decisions throughout its time (except this one).
    I wrote for this and pointed out the evidence and 200 page document written by them and, if nicotine is so dangerous, my 14 year old son can walk into a supermarket and buy flavoured liquid nicotine, that doesn’t have child safety, to spray into his mouth (or drink).
    I also pointed out my evidence of shilling related health problems and I couldn’t quit with any method until I started calling. Now the majority of my health problems are minimal and the public health system isn’t paying for my hospital appointments and prescription subsidising.
    They had thousands of people write with similar stories (including the works top 40 doctors, surgeons and researchers). All were writing in support (yet it was denied due to false evidence that’s been denounced time and time again by research that has no agenda).

    This is sad and I, as with many thousands of people in Australia, are now again criminals trying to live a healthier lifestyle.
    Always remember that nothing is more carcinogenic and dangerous than inhaling smoke (we’re taught this from school living in a bushfire prone country).

    I am saddened by the fact they decided against this and used false media propaganda to justify the decision.
    Another win for the pharmaceutical companies in this country again I guess.

    • Andrew

      Bad laws are there to be broken.

      Vape on good sir, poor laws should not prevent better health outcomes.

      • Matty P

        Laws won’t stop vaping. If anything they’ll push it underground and create a black market with serious safety issues. When it comes to harm reduction there’s more damage created by taking away people’s freedom rather then working with them.

        • Ronky

          The health authorities have been continually offering to work with the e-cig manufacturers to give the public a safe and effective product (if possible) but the manufacturers refuse to play ball and do what the manufacturers of every other product claimed as a smoking quitting aid have had to do. Apparently because they know that they products are neither safe nor effective.

    • pagophilus

      You sound like a disgruntled user who didn’t get his way. Good to see the TGA preventing the population from potential harm. Just imagine what would happen if a kid would drink the stuff…
      It’s time some government somewhere in the world grew some balls and banned smoking full stop.

      • Matty P

        You sound like a dreamer living in a perfect world. Make coffee and alcohol illegal while they’re at it. It’s all drugs that have the potential to kill children. Imagine that (shock horror).

      • Ronky

        At least two already have – Bhutan and Turkmenistan.

    • Ronky

      This comment is nothing but, to use your expression, false media propaganda.
      1. Very few if any of the TGA’s decisions have ever been based on anything put out by the Royal College of (English) Physicians (a private association).
      2. The nicotine spray in the supermarket contains one-thousandth of the nicotine in an e-cigarette cartridge. And the reason it’s on sale in a supermarket is that its manufacturer submitted data proving its efficacy and safety to the TGA who approved it as a registered medicine, first as a prescription-only medicine, then after many years of proven safe use, to S3 and S2 and finally open sale. For many years now the manufacturers of e-cigarettes, most of them subsidiaries of the multinational tobacco companies or the Chinese Communist Party, have steadfastly refused to apply to have their products’ safety and efficacy assessed or apply for their registration as medicines. Instead they continue to run a false, emotive and sensationalist propaganda campaign through the media in the hope of convincing the gullible that their products are safe and affective medicines which those nasty bureaucrats refuse to approve, and trying to put pressure on populist politicians to override the decisions of the medical and scientific experts. This worked for cannabis but thank God it hasn’t worked for e-cigs.
      3. Far from your laughable “thousands of people including the works [sic] top 40 doctors, surgeons and researchers writing in support”, according to the TGA website there were a grand total of 54 submissions supporting the de-scheduling proposal, consisting of those who stood/hoped to make money out of it (including a couple of rogue health professionals), a couple of political ideologues, and (mostly) individuals telling personal anecdotes. Those submitting arguments against the proposal were doctors, genuine scientific researchers, health professional organisations, patient groups like the Cancer Council, and the Chief Health Officers of every State and Territory. There were no submissions by pharmaceutical companies.
      4. If you have been continually using nicotine e-cigs, you are not “again” a criminal, you are “still” a criminal. The fact that some nut-job puts up a proposal to change a law doesn’t mean that the law is in abeyance until he gets a response.
      5. Even if there were evidence that the benefits claimed for e-cigs were true and that they are safer to use than traditional cigarettes, the tobacco companies are not proposing to withdraw traditional cigarettes and market e-cigs in their place, so it’s useless to compare the two. And we’ve seen all this before from Big Tobacco, with the claims that filter tips, low-tar, “light”, “mild” and menthol cigarettes were “safer” (in fact the last actually was even more dangerous).

Leave a reply