A re-elected Baird Government will introduce a bill into Parliament to ban the sale of electronic cigarettes to minors. The bill will make it an offence to sell e-cigarettes and related products – including e-liquid – to anyone under 18. While the sale of liquid nicotine is banned in NSW without approval from the Ministry of Health, e-cigarettes sometimes contain nicotine but are not labelled as such.

Our Government is committed to protecting the health of our children and young people and addressing concerns that e-cigarettes may act as a gateway to nicotine addiction and tobacco smoking. We are determined to guard against the normalisation of smoking among young people, as it has the potential to undermine decades of successful anti-smoking efforts in NSW.

NSW Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant led a panel of toxicology, tobacco control and air pollution experts which recommended banning the sale of e-cigarettes to minors. The move is supported by organisations including Heart Foundation NSW, Cancer Council NSW and Australian Medical Association. The World Health Organization has also called on governments to ban the sale of electronic cigarettes to minors.

NSW currently has no age restrictions on the sale of e-cigarettes and related products, including e-liquid not containing nicotine.

The NSW Liberals & Nationals will address that, ensuring the sale of e-cigarettes to a minor is subject to the same maximum penalty as the sale of a tobacco product to a minor – $11,000 for an individual or $55,000 for a corporation and, for repeat offenders, $55,000 for an individual and $110,000 for a corporation.

If the Baird Government is re-elected at the March 28 poll, it will introduce the bill in the first session of Parliament.