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Italian Lives Not Money

ANPVU writes to the government to say that lives matter more than money

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Italy’s National Association of United Vapers claims vaping saves 83,000 people each year from tobacco-related harm. The Associazione Nazionale per i Vapers Uniti (ANPVU) has written to Matteo Salvini, the Deputy Chairman of the Italian Council of Ministers, congratulating him on relaxing measures on vaping – but points out that it’s still just “a small step forward”.

ANPVU says, “The intent and the hope of ANPVU is to finally see the Italian State approve and share the policies of the United Kingdom where the Vaping is promoted and encouraged by its Ministry of Health.”

“A team of Scottish researchers led by Dr. William E. Stephen of the University of St. Andrews in Scotland has managed to develop a specific methodology called ‘inhalation unit risk’ that measures the risk of developing cancer by chemical inhalation units. To derive the final risk data, the researchers combined the risk of inhalation units with the estimated daily consumption of consumers. The conclusions published in the journal Tobacco Control are clear and unequivocal: ‘The carcinogenic potency of e-cigarettes is less than 1% of that of smoking.”

The UK’s New Nicotine Alliance (NNA) writes: “Since the start of the year, the Italian government has applied taxation to e-liquid to such an extent that a 10ml bottle costs nearly double the price of a packet of 20 cigarettes. These taxes were applied retrospectively meaning that vaping businesses were left with a bill for paying duty on products they had sold well before the date of the new regulations.”

“The government has effectively monopolised sales of e-cigarettes and vaping-related products, so they can only be sold by tobacconists and specialized shops. Online sales of e-liquids have also been banned along with imports from other countries, all advertising is prohibited and there is even taxation on PG and VG.”

Planet of the Vapes covered the introduction of the tax in 2015.

Carmine Canino, President of ANVPU, says in the letter that the organisation doesn’t believe the measures being taken by Salvini will be sufficient to safeguard the vape sector. He adds that Italian consumers “demand the right information, the possibility to easily access harm reduction products without being penalised financially, and to look to the English model for political conscience which should be replicated in every Italian parliamentarian.”

The organisation calls for a rethink of the tax imposition and the availability of measured information about vaping for current smokers. Canino adds: “This sector is like a terminally ill patient to whom, at present, the effects of the disease are being cured, but not the disease itself, which in this case is called consumption tax.

The NNA comments: “As fellow members of the International Network of Nicotine Consumer Associations (INNCO), we at the NNA applaud and support the ANVPU’s action on this and wish them every success. It is quite shameful that the Italian government can so blatantly put tax receipts above the health of their population, and we hope that yesterday’s letter may prick a few institutional consciences in Rome.”

Dave Cross avatar

Dave Cross

Journalist at POTV
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Dave is a freelance writer; with articles on music, motorbikes, football, pop-science, vaping and tobacco harm reduction in Sounds, Melody Maker, UBG, AWoL, Bike, When Saturday Comes, Vape News Magazine, and syndicated across the Johnston Press group. He was published in an anthology of “Greatest Football Writing”, but still believes this was a mistake. Dave contributes sketches to comedy shows and used to co-host a radio sketch show. He’s worked with numerous vape companies to develop content for their websites.

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