Vaping News


New Zealand Urged to Embrace UK's Free Vape Policy to Combat Smoking Rates

Share on:
The Coalition of Asia Pacific Harm Reduction Advocates (CAPHRA) is supporting calls for the New Zealand Government to follow the United Kingdom's lead in implementing a free vape policy to help reduce smoking rates and save lives in the country. In a recent announcement, the UK Government revealed its plan to provide free vaping devices to smokers as part of its efforts to eliminate smoking by 2030.

The UK, a world leader in tobacco harm reduction, has recognized the effectiveness of vaping as a smoking cessation tool. Public Health England estimates that vaping is 95% less harmful than smoking, and millions of former smokers have successfully quit the habit by switching to vaping.

Nancy Loucas a prominent New Zealand public health consumer advocate and executive coordinator of CAPHRA, has praised the UK's forward-thinking approach to tobacco control.

"The bold move by the UK Government to provide free vapes to smokers is a testament to the country's commitment to saving lives and protecting public health. New Zealand has a real opportunity to follow in their footsteps and adopt a similar policy that could drastically reduce the harm caused by smoking," said Loucas.

Despite New Zealand's Smokefree 2025 goal, recent data shows that smoking rates remain stubbornly high, particularly among Māori and Pacific communities. CAPHRA believes that adopting the UK's free vape policy would help address these disparities and enable a more equitable approach to tobacco control.

"New Zealand has shown leadership in the past by embracing innovative harm reduction strategies, and this is another opportunity to demonstrate that commitment to the rest of the world," said Loucas. "Offering free vapes to smokers would not only save lives but also reduce the financial burden on our healthcare system."

Critics of the policy argue that vaping could lead to nicotine addiction among non-smokers, particularly youth. However, evidence from the UK suggests that vaping uptake remains low among non-smokers and young people, and the country's impressive decline in smoking rates cannot be ignored.

CAPHRA is calling on the New Zealand Government to consider the UK's progressive policy and take decisive action to reduce smoking-related harm. Adopting a free vape policy would not only demonstrate New Zealand's commitment to its Smokefree 2025 goal but also play a significant role in improving public health outcomes for all its citizens.

Dave Cross avatar

Dave Cross

Journalist at POTV
View Articles

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.

Join the discussion

Vaping News

Harm Reduction For The Rich

The United Kingdom risks becoming a harm reduction country only for the wealthy, according to Michael Landl of the World Vapers’ Alliance

Vaping News

CAPHRA Highlights Tobacco Control Flaws

The Coalition of Asia Pacific Tobacco Harm Reduction Advocates highlights the flaws in tobacco control which has led to the rise of black market in Australia

Vaping News

A Missed Opportunity at COP10

The Smoke Free Sweden movement says that COP10 was a missed opportunity to save millions of lives

Vaping News

COP10: Promote Tobacco Harm Reduction

Experts with Smoke Free Sweden are emphasising the urgent need for a Tobacco Harm Reduction approach at COP10