• July 8, 2020

Critical mass

A petition to legalize heat-not-burn tobacco products in Taiwan and subject them to the same health and welfare surcharges as other tobacco products has garnered more than 5,000 signatures on the government’s public policy participation platform, reports The Taipei Times.

The petition, titled “legalize heat-not-burn tobacco products, but include them in the health and welfare surcharge of tobacco products” was proposed on the National Development Council’s online policy platform on April 27. It was approved two days later and entered the signature collecting period.

When a petition receives more than 5,000 signatures, the government is required to issue a public response on the platform within two months.

There is currently no law regarding the bringing heated tobacco products into Taiwan, so the petition states the products should be subject to the health and welfare surcharge on tobacco products to improve regulation.

Taiwan Tobacco Harm Reduction Association chairperson Danny Wang said the health and welfare surcharge is the main source of funding for the government’s long-term care services, so the president should create new revenue sources for it.

“Hopefully, the Executive Yuan would perform its administrative duty,” Wang said.