“The Philippine Senate will be on the right side of the people when it approves the most progressive vaping legislation in Asia Pacific,” says Nancy Loucas, Executive Coordinator of the Coalition of Asia Pacific Tobacco Harm Reduction Advocates (CAPHRA).
Her comments follow the release of a survey conducted by ACORN Marketing & Research Consultants. ‘A Survey of Attitudes Among Adult Tobacco & Nicotine Users in the Philippines’ was commissioned by consumer advocacy group, Vapers PH.
Results confirm wide public support for a Tobacco Harm Reduction (THR) approach, using less harmful alternatives to combustible cigarettes such as e-cigarettes, HTPs and other smoke-free products.
The survey revealed a staggering 94% of respondents agree that the Government should enact policies to encourage adult smokers to switch to less harmful alternatives to cigarettes. At the same time, they must ensure these products are not used by the youth.
After the House of Representatives passed the legislation in May, the Senate is now deliberating on the Vaporized Nicotine Products Regulation Act. It empowers the Government to regulate the importation, manufacture, sale, packaging, distribution, use and consumption of vapor (e-cigarettes) and heated tobacco products (HTPs).
Peter Dator, president of consumer group Vapers PH and CAPHRA member, says the results of this survey come at a crucial time.
“The Senate should be very encouraged that 9 out of ten Filipino smokers support the Government passing laws to encourage them to switch to less harmful alternatives. The support is overwhelming,” he says.
Ms Loucas says the Philippine Government should be congratulated for its determination to reflect the will the people.
“The Government has done well not to succumb to the World Health Organisation’s lies about vaping or Michael Bloomberg’s bullying of governments to ban safer nicotine alternatives,” she says.
ACORN’s survey on the attitudes of Filipino tobacco and nicotine consumers was conducted from 3 to 15 August 2021. It involved 2,000 respondents who were legal-age smokers (above 18) and vapers (above 21) nationwide.
The survey found that 72% of respondents believe e-cigarettes and HTPs are better alternatives to cigarettes and 88% of adult smokers would consider switching to smoke-free products. Nearly 90% believed that flavoured smoke-free products should be allowed, as long as they are not marketed or sold to non-smokers or youth.
As well as an overwhelmingly positive perception about safer nicotine products, the survey showed Filipino consumers wanted greater access to accurate information about the products.
Over 16 million Filipinos still smoke combustible cigarettes. Given nearly 90,000 Filipinos die from smoking-related diseases every year, Mr Dator says the legislation will go a long way to addressing the country’s stubbornly high smoking rates.
“Fortunately, about one million former Filipino smokers have already switched to novel smoke-free products such as electronic cigarettes and HTPs. This legislation will only encourage more Filipinos to put their health first,” says Mr Dator.
Ms Loucas says the Philippines adoption of best practice Tobacco Harm Reduction policies will hopefully be emulated by other Asia Pacific governments.
“Countries like Australia, Thailand, Hong Kong and India should listen to their people, not kowtow to the WHO’s poisoned anti-vaping view. By standing strongly and independently, Filipino Senators can be confident that their risk-proportionate legislation will save thousands of lives,” says Nancy Loucas.
The latest research proving anti-tobacco billionaire foundations have funnelled millions into Asia Pacific NGOs to lobby governments to ban vaping, and discredit vaping advocates, has received worldwide press attention.
To view the full findings and money trails, visit: https://www.24shareupdates.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/Clarisse-Virgino-Research-with-IRS-returns-98.pdf
Now live and boasting over 14,000 testimonials, CAPHRA is calling on those who’ve quit cigarettes through smoke-free nicotine alternatives to tell their story on www.righttovape.org
Consumer groups in the Asia Pacific region have also launched a petition at change.org/v4v-petition that urges the WHO to respect consumer rights and to stop demonizing Tobacco Harm Reduction options ahead of November’s meeting of the WHO FCTC.
For a free digital media repository on tobacco harm reduction in Asia Pacific – including media releases, images and graphics – please visit https://apthrmedia.org
The Coalition of Asia Pacific Tobacco Harm Advocates (CAPHRA) is a regional alliance of consumer tobacco harm reduction advocacy organisations. Its mission is to educate, advocate and represent the right of adult alternative nicotine consumers to access and use of products that reduce harm from tobacco use.