The Sultanate of Oman has recently introduced a new directive, Resolution No. 756 of 2023, which effectively prohibits the circulation and trade of electronic cigarettes, electronic hookahs, and their related accessories. This move aims to address concerns regarding the health risks associated with the use of these products.
The resolution consists of several articles outlining the ban and its consequences. Article I explicitly prohibits the trade of electronic cigarettes and hookahs, along with their accessories. Furthermore, Article II specifies the penalties for violating these provisions, which may include a doubling of fines for repeat offenders.
New Directive Issued: Revised Penalties And Enforcement
The resolution, issued by the Consumer Protection Authority, also revises the penalties for violations. The fine for non-compliance has been doubled from 500 Omani rials to 1,000 Omani rials. Moreover, in cases of persistent violations, an additional administrative fine of 50 Omani rials per day may be imposed, with a maximum limit of 2,000 Omani rials. Additionally, any confiscated items will be destroyed according to established procedures.
This decision will be officially published in the Official Gazette and is scheduled to come into effect the day after its publication. The swift implementation underscores the government’s commitment to safeguarding public health and promoting responsible consumption practices.
The ban on electronic cigarettes and hookahs is not unique to Oman. In 2022, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) also took measures to regulate the use of e-cigarettes. They brought a ban on smoking particularly in indoor spaces and offices. The health ministry confirmed that the use of e-cigarettes falls under the federal law on tobacco control, reflecting a broader regional effort to address the growing concerns surrounding these products.
In conclusion, Oman’s decision to ban electronic cigarettes and hookahs underscores the importance of prioritising public health and safety. By implementing strict regulations and penalties, the government aims to mitigate the risks associated with the use of these products and promote healthier lifestyles among its citizens. Additionally, regional efforts, such as those seen in the UAE, highlight a collective commitment to addressing emerging health challenges and safeguarding the well-being of communities across the Middle East.
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