Vapers in Germany will have to pay more for their vape products if a new bill from the health ministry passes
E-cigarettes in Germany have historically benefitted from low rates. But the German Federal Ministry of Finance may apply a new tobacco increase to vape products for the first time, according to a report published in a German newspaper.
The draft proposal is due to go to a departmental vote on Monday. If it passes, it will be the first proposed tobacco tax increase in six years.
The bill has met with resistance from vapers and advocacy groups in Germany and elsewhere.
The World Vapers’ Alliance (WVA) argued that health authorities should make vaping products easier to access in order to reduce the harms associated with smoking.
WVA director, Michael Landl, said:
“Vaping is 95% less harmful than smoking and is recommended by health authorities in the United Kingdom, France and Canada for smoking cessation. Germany should follow the lead of these countries instead of starting a war on vapes.”
Lockdown Tobacco Boom
Sales of combustible tobacco products have increased since the first COVID-19 lockdown.
The low cost of vaping in comparison to cigarettes provides a strong incentive for smokers looking to quit.
But the proposed tax and the advertising ban due to come into force in 2024 could deter vapers from switching.
Landl said: “People who want to stay away from cigarettes or who want to switch should not be used as a source of funding for the riddled state budget. Unfortunately, it looks like that, even if nobody wants to admit that.”