To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of trends in the illegal sale of vapes (a) smuggled in through the UK borders and (b) via internet sales; and whether he has made an assessment of the impact of the illegal sale of vapes on his public health strategy.
On 11 April 2023, we launched a call for evidence to identify opportunities to reduce youth vaping. The call for evidence explores issues related to regulatory compliance, including those sold online and in retail outlets. Once this closes, this year, on 6 June, the Government will assess a range of options based on the evidence provided, including potential future changes to vaping policy and regulation. The Government continues to provide funding to local authorities in support of local trading standards activity. This includes enforcement of non-compliant and/or illegal products that may pose a risk to public health.
We recently announced £3 million of additional funding for a new national illicit vaping enforcement unit to tackle illicit and underage vape sales across the country. This will help us to better understand trends related to illegal vaping, ascertain what is imported at United Kingdom borders and allow us to assess the impact of the illegal sale of vapes on public health.