Tobacco Control Legislation

Ban on Alternative Smoking Products

From April 30, 2022, no person may import, promote, manufacture, sell, or possess for commercial purposes alternative smoking products, including electronic smoking products, heated tobacco products and herbal cigarettes.

What are Alternative Smoking Products?

Alternative smoking products (“ASPs”) are defined under Part 2 of Schedule 7 to the Smoking (Public Health) (Amendment) Ordinance 2021. You may also refer to this pamphlet.

Simply put, ASP is:

(1) A device (other than a waterpipe) that is capable of generating an aerosol, other than by means of direct lighting, from any substances (except dangerous drugs) and being used for imitating conventional smoking; its component or accessory.

(2) Any substance (other than a dangerous drug) suitable for use with a device described in (1) to generate an aerosol from that substance. Examples include heated tobacco sticks and “e-liquid”.

(3) Any plant material (other than tobacco or a dangerous drug) rolled up in any material for immediate use for imitating conventional smoking (i.e. herbal cigarettes).

Examples of electronic smoking products

Examples of heat tobacco products

Examples of herbal cigarettes

The Prohibitions:

Import

  • No person may import an alternative smoking product by way of parcels, cargoes, and bringing in by incoming travellers.
  • Articles carried by persons in transit at the Hong Kong International Airport without passing through immigration control, air transshipment cargoes, or articles staying on an aircraft or in a vessel during transit, are exempt.

Manufacture

  • No person may manufacture alternative smoking products.

Promotion and Giving

  • No person may give an alternative smoking product to another person for promotion or advertisement.
  • No person may give an alternative smoking product to another person in exchange for a token or as a prize in any event or competition.
  • No person may give another person an object that is intended to be shown in public and contains —

(1) the name or trade name of a person associated with the marketing of alternative smoking products; or

(2) a trade mark or brand name of an alternative smoking product, or a pictorial device, or any part of the device, commonly associated with the trade mark or brand name.

Sale

  • No person may sell an alternative smoking product, or sell any product that includes an alternative smoking product as gift.

Advertisement of alternative smoking products

  • The provisions for the ban on tobacco advertisements also apply to advertisements of alternative smoking products.

Possession

  • No person may possess alternative smoking products for commercial purposes, including manufacture, sale and giving them to other persons for purposes as specified in the Ordinance.

Ban on Use in Statutory No Smoking Areas

  • No person may smoke or carry an activated alternative smoking product in a statutory no smoking area (NSA).

Please refer to the Smoking (Public Health) (Amendment) Ordinance 2021 for the detailed provisions.

Penalty

  • Anyone who carries out any of the following acts in relation to an alternative smoking product commits an offence–
  • Acts Penalty
    Import, manufacture, sale, possession for commercial purposes, or giving to another person for promotion Summary conviction to a fine of HK$50,000 and imprisonment for 6 months
    Broadcast of advertisement Summary conviction to a fine of HK$50,000 and, in the case of a continuing offence, to a further penalty of HK$1,500 for each day during which the offence continues
    Using in NSA Fixed penalty of HK$1,500 or summary conviction to a fine of HK$5,000

FAQ

Smoking (Public Health) (Amendment) Ordinance 2021 FAQ

To know more about the hazards of E-cigarettes and Heated Tobacco Products, Please refer to:

Reason to Quit – Tobacco Facts: E-cigarette

Reason to Quit – Tobacco Facts: Heated Tobacco Products

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