On Thursday, 18 May, the Saeima adopted in the final reading amendments, which had been deemed urgent and by which a directive of the European Commission is to be transposed, establishing restrictions on placing flavoured heated tobacco products on the market.
As of 20 May 2020 it is already prohibited to place on the market in the European Union flavoured cigarettes and roll-your-own tobacco with a market share of more than 3% in the relevant category. The legislative amendments will establish a restriction on characteristic flavours also in regard to heated tobacco products.
As noted in the annotation of the draft law, characteristic flavour is a specific aroma or taste which is not the aroma or taste of tobacco and which is created by an additive or a combination of additives, such as fruit, herb, spice, alcohol, candy, menthol or vanilla flavourings, and which is perceptible prior to or during the use of the tobacco product.
Various studies have shown that tobacco and nicotine products with added flavourings (taste) generate interest among non-smokers, especially youths, to try them or take up smoking, the annotation of the draft law states.
The amendments also provide a definition of a heated tobacco product, stating that it is a novel tobacco product that is heated to produce an emission containing nicotine and other chemicals, which is then inhaled by the user, and that, depending on its characteristics, is a smokeless tobacco product or a tobacco product for smoking.
The aforementioned requirements regarding restricting flavouring of heated tobacco products will come into effect at the same time throughout all European Union member states and will apply to all manufacturers, distributors and sellers.
The legislative amendments will come into effect on 23 October 2023.
Saeima Press Service