The purchase age limit for e-cigarettes in the Philippines has been lowered from 21 to 18

The Philippine Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) has set floor prices for heating, vaping, and other electronic nicotine delivery systems, ABS-CBN News reported. Among them, the base price of 0.7ml pods is Php 131.04; the lowest prices of 1.8ml and 1.9ml nicotine salt pods are Php 306.88 and Php 318.08 respectively.

Meanwhile, a 15ml bottle of traditional free-base e-liquid has a base price of PHP 207.2. The lowest price for 30ml is Php 352.8. According to BIR East NCR Director Edgar Tolentino, the new price guidance will help the economy and protect the health of minors.

“BIR will have exclusive jurisdiction over taxpayer registration, setting floor prices for products, and drafting and publishing tax regulations covering vaping products,” Edgar Tolentino said. He also confirmed that newly appointed BIR Commissioner Romeo Lumagui Jr. will be tasked with cracking down on illegal vaping dealers. “We need to support the Commissioner’s plans; one of which is to focus on illegal e-cigarette sellers because if smuggling continues, we will lose huge revenues from vape products,” he said.

According to relevant reports, on July 25 this year, the new version of e-cigarette regulations in the Philippines came into effect, and the key points are:

Transfer from the Food and Drug Administration to regulation by the Department of Trade and Industry;

The legal purchase age has been changed from 21 to 18;

The nicotine content should not be higher than 65mg/ml, which is 6.5%;

Open equipment should have child locks, anti-modification functions, and prevent damage and leakage;

To allow sales channels to advertise through direct marketing or the Internet after completing the relevant registration;

Sales through e-commerce or media platforms are allowed, but measures need to be taken to block access to the site under the age of 18;

Restrictions on multiple flavors are canceled, but the sale of products that are inappropriately attractive to minors is prohibited (flavor descriptions include fruits, candies, desserts or appearances involving cartoon characters)

According to relevant data, since 2019, the Philippine government has collected about 15.3 billion Philippine pesos in e-cigarette taxes.