PETALING JAYA: The health ministry today clarified that electronic cigarettes (vaping) and shisha containing nicotine are included in the smoking ban at all eateries nationwide from Jan 1.
Minister Dzulkefly Ahmad said non-nicotine electronic cigarettes were not classified as tobacco products and were not banned from use.
“Currently, the sale of liquids for electronic cigarettes with nicotine is controlled under the Poisons Act 1952.
“The smoking ban, under regulation 11 of the Control of Tobacco Product Regulations 2004, includes cigarettes and all tobacco products such as shisha and electronic cigarettes with nicotine,” he told FMT.
He was responding to a call made by the Malaysian Academy of Pharmacy for vaping and shisha to be included in the smoking ban to be imposed next year.
Its principal, Assoc Prof Mohamad Haniki Nik Mohamed, said that apart from maintaining public health, the use of electronic cigarettes had been included as a definition of smoking under the amended Control of Tobacco Product Regulations.
Putrajaya has announced a mandatory smoking ban in all restaurants, coffee shops and hawker centres starting next year. The ban also covers open-air eateries.
Dzulkefly had earlier said that vape and shisha were not included in the ban but he said his ministry was holding discussions on enforcing regulations involving these products.
Today, the minister said his ministry officers would inspect those using vape devices at restaurants to detect if they contain nicotine.
Enforcement will be carried out by the ministry’s environmental health assistant officers. There are 5,008 such officers nationwide.