The US-based Tobacco Vapor Electronic Cigarette Association has attacked Hong Kong’s plan to ban e-cigarettes, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reported Wednesday.
Ray Story, the group’s founder and chief executive, criticized the Hong Kong government for not prohibiting traditional cigarettes, which he said are way more harmful than e-cigarettes.
“Tobacco vapor electronic cigarettes contain only five substances — propylene glycol, glycerin, water, nicotine and flavoring,” Story said.
By contrast, traditional cigarettes contain dozens of harmful substances, he said.
Nicotine is the most controversial substance, because of its addictiveness, in the debate about whether e-cigarettes should be banned.
The Hong Kong Council on Smoking and Health recommended that the government prohibit the sale and consumption of e-cigarettes, so as to prevent them from encouraging more people from taking up smoking.
Story argued that even potatoes and tomatoes contain nicotine and that overconsumption of water could also be toxic.
He hopes governments in Asia, especially mainland China, will accept e-cigarettes, as their US and European counterparts did after his lobbying.
The mainland is the world’s largest maker of parts for e-cigarettes, which Story said are expected to overtake traditional cigarettes in popularity in 10 years.
Translation by Vey Wong
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