MANILA, Philippines — The Senate on Thursday authorised on third and ultimate studying a invoice looking for to manage the importation, manufacture, sale, packaging, distribution, use, and communication of vaporized nicotine and non-nicotine merchandise.
Voting 19-2-2, senators handed Senate Invoice No. 2239 or the proposed Vaporized Nicotine Merchandise Regulation Act.
Underneath the invoice, vaporized nicotine merchandise (VNP) or “vapes” aren’t allowed to be bought to minors.
In the course of the interval of amendments earlier this week, Senator Pia Cayetano proposed to lift—from 18 to 21 years outdated—the minimal allowable age underneath the invoice.
In introducing her modification, Cayetano stated if the target of the invoice is to search out the stability between permitting older, mature people who smoke to shift to vaporized nicotine merchandise and protecting it out of the palms of the younger inhabitants, the age requirement must be 21, which can be the age indicated within the sin tax regulation.
However Senate President Professional-Tempore Ralph Recto, sponsor of the invoice, didn’t settle for the modification, saying it could not make sense that on the majority age of 18, one can smoke and drink however is barred from utilizing “less harmful products.”
Throughout voting, Cayetano’s modification was rejected.
Underneath the invoice, retailers or distributors each for bodily or on-line shops are required to be registered with the Division of Commerce and Business (DTI) and the Securities and Trade Fee.
For sellers, the DTI is remitted to set product requirements, which must be met inside a restricted time period, based on the invoice.
The measure additionally bans the sale and distribution of VNPs inside 100 meters from “any point of the perimeter of” a faculty, playground, or different services frequented significantly by minors.
In the meantime, the invoice requires institutions providing, promoting, or distributing VNPs to bear a “point-of-sale signage which states that sale to or by persons below 18 years old is illegal.”
Additional, the measure prohibits celebrities or social media influencers from being featured in such commercials and different types of shopper communication.
These commercials, the invoice stated, mustn’t “contain an endorsement, implied or expressed, by a celebrity or social media influencer.”
Cayetano and Senator Francis Pangilinan voted in opposition to the passage of the invoice whereas Senators Bong Go and Manny Pacquiao abstained from voting.
Cayetano stated she was “beyond disappointed and saddened” that merchandise coated by the invoice won’t have the “regulatory stamp” of the Meals and Drug Administration (FDA).
Cayetano has been calling on her colleagues to uphold the FDA’s jurisdiction to manage vapes underneath the measure.
“And it hurts me deeply that I have not been able to convince my colleagues that simply by regulating and allowing the FDA to do its job is not good enough for the Senate,” she added.
“We had proposed to stick to the two flavors and allow FDA to agree to other flavors that it deems fit. The honorable sponsor (Recto) said no to that as well. And finally, for the FDA, this Senate has resoundingly said no FDA regulation,” she additionally stated.
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