Youth vaping crackdown: B.C. to hike PST on vaping products, limit nicotine content

Youth vaping crackdown: B.C. to hike PST on vaping products, limit nicotine content

British Columbia will significantly hike the provincial sales tax on vaping products and strictly limit their nicotine content in an effort to crack d

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British Columbia will significantly hike the provincial sales tax on vaping products and strictly limit their nicotine content in an effort to crack down on youth vaping.

Health Minister Adrian Dix, Finance Minister Carole James and Education Minister Rob Fleming announced the province’s 10-point plan on Thursday.

READ MORE: B.C. to unveil 3-ministry plan to crackdown on youth vaping

James said the new tax rate would hike the PST on vape products from seven per cent to 20 per cent.

“We know that youth are particularly price sensitive,” James said.

1:59 Growing number of Canadian youth vaping

Growing number of Canadian youth vaping

The plan would also see nicotine content in vaping products limited to 20 milligrams per millilitre.

It will also strictly regulate the sale of flavoured vape products. Flavours appealing to youth will be banned outright, while other flavours will only be available in adult-only stores.

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READ MORE: Number of probable vaping-related illness cases in B.C. jumps to 3: Health Canada

The province is also planning new labelling requirements, which include plain packaging with health warnings.

And it will introduce new restrictions on advertising, including restrictions on bus ads, retail store windows, and billboards.

1:44 B.C. government to crack down on vaping

B.C. government to crack down on vaping

Fleming said the province will also roll out a youth-led anti-vaping social media campaign, supported by resources in schools.

READ MORE: Vancouver could become next B.C. city to outlaw vaping ads, support product ban

The popularity of vaping among teens has been a growing concern in B.C. and around the world, amid a surge in cases of vaping-related illness.

At least three “probable” cases have been identified in B.C., with another five detected across the country. In the U.S., several dozen cases have been identified.

In B.C., around 6,000 vendors are permitted to sell tobacco products, compared to around 90,000 points of sale for vaping products.

More to come…

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