Countries Where Vaping is Banned and Why

By Lindsay Fox Posted February 7, 2013

It’s hard to see why anybody who was aware of e-cigarettes and has done some basic research on them could possibly conclude that they should be banned, but several countries have made that exact decision. You might be wondering why anybody would move to ban something with so much potential to reduce the harm associated with smoking, but the reasons don’t really stand up to much scrutiny. Here’s a list of the countries where e-cigarettes are banned, and a look at the most common reasons.


[Note: We’ve updated this post as of December 2015 – check out the new version here]


Which Countries Have Banned E-Cigarettes?


Countries That Have Banned Vaping

The e-cigarette is a relatively new phenomenon, so in most places legislation is yet to really catch up with the technology. However, countries like Canada, Mexico, Australia, Israel, Brazil, Hong Kong, Panama, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates have completely banned e-cigarettes. They are also regulated heavily as medical products in Denmark, where they are technically illegal but none have been licensed so far. Some places, such as Finland and Australia, have rules where they can technically be sold, but can’t contain nicotine. Many countries also have marketing bans on all nicotine products, which cover e-cigarettes.


Reason One – Needs More Study


One of the most common reasons for banning e-cigarettes is typified by the situation in Brazil. The FDA report issued in 2009 is thought to have been instrumental in the decision, and it basically boils down to the fact that e-cigarettes haven’t been studied in depth. This is true, and more research evidently needs to take place with regards to the risks of e-cigarettes. However, based on the existing research you can draw the conclusion that vaping is much safer than smoking. This argument can be summarized pretty simply: we can’t quite say with certainty that e-cigarettes aren’t safe, so you can keep using tobacco cigarettes, which we definitively know to be dangerous.


Reason Two – Nicotine Overdose


The Canadian e-cigarette ban was justified in a different way. It is argued that e-cigarettes increase the risk of nicotine overdose. It’s important to note that there is no such ban on smoking an inordinate amount of cigarettes in one sitting. Nor is there a ban on caffeine, which is also dangerous if consumed in inordinate amount. In fact, if you have enough of most things, overdose is actually quite likely. If e-cigarettes are used correctly (as much as you would use a cigarette), there is obviously no risk of overdose. Anything can be damaging if misused.


Reason Three – FDA Study


In Panama, they banned e-cigarettes in 2009 because of a now infamous FDA study. They looked at two brands of e-cigs, with 19 cigarettes in total, and found trace amounts of diethylene glycol in one of them, and also some tobacco-specific nitrosamines. The FDA, however, neglected to mention that the nitrosamines (which are carcinogenic) are pretty much inevitable in any produce derived from tobacco, including FDA-approved gums and patches. Diethylene glycol is also found in aspirin in ten times the quantity and hasn’t been found in subsequent tests.




The poor reasons cited for banning e-cigarettes are particularly harmful because they essentially leave tobacco as the only option. Realistically, the legislation could be seen as over-protective, but unless it’s accompanied by a ban on tobacco this argument crumbles into nothingness. Countries should support their citizens’ freedom to choose, and by no means ban something with the potential to save so many lives.


Compare to Smoking Bans Around the Globe in 2009


Smoking Bans Around the Globe



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  • Jane Doe

    It is clear who is behind the ban on electronic cigarettes to anyone but a moron. The tobacco industry is a major lobby and contributor to Washingtons Congressmen and Senators re-election
    funds. Duh!

    I am an avid non-smoker and know of the horrors of smoking and the burden of medical costs they bring to the nation, but this is not the case with the use of electronic cigarettes. Nicotine is only one flavor of choice for electronic cigarettes as there are many herbs and fruits available for use.

    The vapor provided by electronic cigarettes are not to be inhaled, but are to be tasted in the mouth much like a cigar, then exhaled. This method of use is clearly stated on the electronic cigarette instructions. Clorox instructions tell you not to drink it. It will kill you if you do. It is still on the market.

    The following is my stand on the use of electronic cigarettes. If you are to ban them, then you must also ban hookahs. An electronic cigarette is nothing more than a mini portable hookah.
    New York and the countries banning electronic cigarettes have thousands of hookah sellers and users.

    You must also ban all the nebulizers for they are used to inhale vapor laden medicines that can cause the heart to race and dizziness to the user. Electronic cigarettes could actually be a life saving device to asthma victims if filled with medicine. They are certainly smaller and more accessible than the portable nebulizer that just hit the market.

    Either all the devices above are kept on the market or they ALL go. If there are others that share this view point then write to your Congressman or Senator and to the Tobacco industry and voice your complaint. Fair is fair and this is certainly not fair business practice.

    • big als

      I am in mexico right now many peeps use them here i also travel throughout the world and have not yet any problems.

  • RevO

    You my friend obviously have no idea in hell what you are talking about.
    All of the flavors regardless contain nicotine unless indicated
    otherwise. As for the part about not suppose to inhale you again are
    incorrect. Lastly they are nothing like a hookah. A hookah is
    essentially a water bong the smoke is pulled through water to
    essentially be cleaned which is does make it somewhat cleaner but still

    There is no water in the vapor which is produced
    propylene glycol and vegetable glycerin are what produce the vapor
    nicotine is included with the mix along with natural and artificial
    flavoring. One last thought just so you know tobacco industries are
    becoming big players in the E-Cig industry Lorillard owns Blu E-Cig
    company and Philip Morris is currently working on producing their own
    brand of E-Cig as well as many other Big Tobacco companies are buying up
    their own E-Cig companies as quickly as they possibly can!

  • Stephen Stringer

    Jane Doe you have no idea about electronic cigarettes and should hold back your very invalid opinions you will do more to harm our community of vapers than help we have chosen a method that is safer than cigarettes that does not affect those around us and that we need to help us in our quest of evolving from such a deadly weed. we are educating ourselves and helping to educate those that have been misinformed. we are a very responsible group of people who are sick of the bad press by under educated people. knowledge and research my friend is free and should be used proactively.
    I used to smoke between 30 and 40 cigarettes a day I tried every method known to man to kick the weed with no results until I tried this method and within a flash it worked not only did it work but I have never touched a real cigarette since which has helped hundreds of people around me they are no longer passive smokers not even of the vapour that leave my lips. that correct not even the vapour its the same as any vapour that you find do some research and maybe you will understand and agree. evryone should be happy that we have evolved and been self promoting of a system that helps the smoker unlike the governments who are running scared of the vast profits they are loosing in revenue which will have to be found by some other tax method. ooops I get it the none smoker will not like that. as far as banning is concerned that will not have much of an affect they banned it in canada and they have an underground network that is now out of control VAPING FOREVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Your Mom

      You are a non smoker so you say! So you are a hypocrite! Nicotine a wonderful pesticide! Vapor you say? Water Vapor you say? Go back to school instead of promoting something all of you know nothing about, last I checked water vapor you could not see! Out of your e cig you can. So what chemicals are you exhaling from your disgusting lungs?
      So you say its water vapor hmm… nonsense… because if it was water vapor you would not see the exhalation

      • Jonathan Gurango

        Have you ever seen a cloud?

      • Stacey

        Or have you never seen Fog????

      • thinkforyourself

        mmm your an idiot, how many cases have you heard of vapes killing people? im sure the number is 0, now lets compare that to the number of tobacco related injurys conditions and deaths… how could you say there not a safer alternative? also, propelene glycol is a main ingredient in albuterol, wich is a doctor prescribed breathing treatment, in wich, they vaporize the substance and the patient inhales the vapors, you have no clue what you are talking about. no one is saying that vapes are not in some way possibly harmful, but if we list the chemicals found in a single cigarret the names you see will ring a lot more bells than VG an PG. you probably don’t care that Chantix, a stop smoking medication, has made people want to, and actualy commit suicide, that’s okay though, and that the nicotine patches can lead to heart attacks, that’s okay to right?.. thanks for your stupidity

      • t

        Lol clouds are water vaper.. pretty sure i can see clouds. Hope in the past year you are more educated about vaping, and understand that its a life saver for millions of people, who made the mistake of smoking tobacco at a young age.

      • Jamie

        You’re a miserable hater liberal bitch, fuck you and your left wing commie filth. You could care less what others health concerns are. You don’t agree with vaping so therefore it should be banned!!! Small minded libtard, go to hell while you carry around that self licking ice cream cone. You go school yourself about the truth of vaping so afterwards all you will be able do is lie about the truth of it afterward.

  • Stacey

    I smoked for 30 years. Switched to ecig in 1 day. End of story.

    • Dave

      I smoked for 45 years and a recent health scare switched me to vaping. Best thing I ever did

      • Irvin

        Smoking for almost 20 years, tried ecig and never looked back. Its stops my craving from nicotine while giving me my sense of smell and my breath back.

        I can jog without feeling breathless and my skin has gotten healthier, all thanks to vaping. How could anyone with a conscience ban ecig?

    • kool

      indeed, smoking for 23yrs, swtiched to e-cig.. one of the best decision in my life

  • Carl McAdams

    Jane Doe,

    You are very misinformed about vaping. First, nicotine is an optional ingredient in most ejuices. It is not a “flavor”. People can vape with or without nicotine in their ejuices. The vapor produced is meant to be inhaled just like cigarette smoke, approximating the same experience as smoking without all the harmful ingredients produced by cigarette smoke. The FDA has approved both PG (Propelene Glycol) and VG (Vegetable Glycerin) as safe. Nicotine fluid mixed in the correct proportions is relatively safe. By relatively, I mean by itself, it is FAR less addictive and harmful than when mixed with all the other addictive ingredients put into cigarettes. It is still toxic in large amounts. However, since nicotine is the prime ingredient in nicotine gum and patches meant to help people quit smoking, it is safe to assume that vaping it is at least as safe as those less effective methods.

    It is overwhelmingly obvious that the tobacco lobby is the main group trying to stop vaping. They blocked it in Canada because that country generates HUGE tax revenue through tobacco sales. That is the ONLY reason people are deliberately being misinformed about the obvious health benefits of vaping versus smoking. Please stop continuing the confusion and better educate yourself about this subject.

    • grantiespanties

      She’s not making these arguments, she’s saying that these are the arguments being made by the countries that are banning vapes.

      • grantiespanties

        oh just kidding your response was a response to a response not a response to the article

    • Your Mom

      Truth with come out soon… ban all e-cigs! You are right for one thing the FDA approved PG and VG for use but you missed the issue at hand they never ever, ever, ever, EVER….. approved them for human inhailation!

      • Jonathan Gurango

        Yes, they are actually.

      • anonomous

        thats interesting you say that about PG which is used in inhalers.

  • Rick

    In Canada I can buy ecig kits in many pharmacies, gas stations, convenience stores. There are several vape shops. I can get mods whatever. I order all my ejuice in Canada. I vape everywhere even hospitals. The ecigs available in pharmacies and convenience stores gas stations are nicotine free. However this is not considered illegal in anyway.

  • Rick

    I started vaping two years ago and gave up cigarettes 8 months ago and vape as an alternative. The pharmacy options were not effective. I am Canadian and vape everywhere I like.

  • rick

    e cigs are not banned in Canada by the way only e cigs with nicotine are banned. You can vape zero % nicotine where ever you like.

    • evel

      Ecigs with nicotine are not banned in Canada. I sell them, openly in a brick and mortar. There is no law against it.

  • J.T

    One of the biggest reasons that the ban on vaping is in place in several countries is because it can’t be regulated and taxed by the government. One example that stands out the most is in Singapore, a county know for its high “sin” taxes (on luxury cars, tobacco, alcohol, gambling etc). If the government lost the ability to regulate and tax the sales of tobacco, it would result in a huge loss of income for them. So for them it is better for their citizens to keep smoking expensive cigarettes and lining the government’s coffers until they die a premature death, presumably from smoking.

  • hemicman

    I got my vape, several batteries and bottles of e liquid into Dubai, no problem. I also took a couple of ‘e cigarettes in my hand luggage. I’ve been vaping openly in the city for a couple of weeks and nobody objects. not banned in the UAE… ‘frowned upon’ perhaps.


      Did you order anything from Fasttech to Dubai?

      -Vaping here in Abu Dhabi

  • zero cool

    Yeeeah you dont have your facts straight…. Its not banned in canada… importation of nicotine without proper documentation is though.

  • Tammy Allen

    Vaping is not banned in Canada, the use of nicotine is regulated. Maybe you should check your facts before you publish them. One town in Alberta has banned vaping in public places the same as smoking but there is no out right ban. I can still purchase juice and mods and anything else I need without worrying about being arrested. Are you sure you’re a real writer??

  • Irvin

    Good thing I know how to make my own ejuice, mods and atomizers. They can ban all they want but they wouldn’t leave me with regular cig as my only option.

  • disqus_ovxuopQYu5

    Vaping is huge in Canada and we use nicotine as well.

  • disqus_ovxuopQYu5

    As for Brazil it may be banned but I saw ecigs sold in some shops also I used my vapourizer everywhere in Brazil with no issues.

  • Kate Gerogianis


    • haruspex

      Where do you live that you can’t buy them?

    • mo220284

      i am sure if you buy it from different countries

      and i am a ebay seller i do have few people from outside uk bought my product.
      my ebay seller is mo220284, make sure you type seller:mo220284

  • Saputra Bin Muslim

    band because gov protect tobaco industri

  • Vera Mei

    Really cannot understand why they banned e cig, e cig is much more healthier than normal smoking, maybe gov is protecting tobacco industry and charge more taxes from them. people who doesn’t smoke before may no need to vape, but for heavy smokers, it’s wise to vape to help quit smoking.

  • Zakaria

    E Cig contains nicotines.

    Exposure to nicotine changes the way your brain functions. Let’s
    imagine your brain as a computer. Like a computer, your brain
    processes, stores and uses information. In a computer, information
    travels in the form of electricity moving through wires; information
    transfer is a binary process, with switches being either on or off. In
    your brain, neurons
    are the cells that transfer and integrate information. Each neuron
    receives input from thousands of other neurons throughout the brain,
    processes that information and makes any necessary adjustments before
    communicating the message throughout the body. While signals are
    conducted through individual neurons as electric current, it’s a group
    of chemical messengers called neurotransmitters that actually relay
    those messages between neurons and other cells [source: National Institute on Drug Abuse].

    • Atrum Angelus

      Do you drink tea, coffee or pop? Caffeine does the same thing.

      Second, you can vape without nicotine.

    • Zhu Zhu Xiao

      ecig can help people quit meth

  • Johnny Lin

    Hey, ppl help me pls. I have order the vape from singapore not knowing tht it is illegal. What should i do?

    • Zhu Zhu Xiao

      too late you posted here

  • Jyahn

    Big tobacco and corrupt government is behind this.

  • Zhu Zhu Xiao

    i bet vape will solve meths user problem too.. than no way country will ban it let do a test on meth user, if they quit with turning cold tukey , it a big break thru to shut many people

  • Zhu Zhu Xiao

    but if vape is allow, willl be hard to see who vape nico who vape meths, is that y singapore so scare , that people can vape meth in public ,,and hard to track??

  • Well… soon a movie comes that will reveal the Lies, corrupt politicians, Tobacco industry.. It is time for the truth about vaping….

  • Jenny M

    These countries could care less about their citizen’s health. They just want the tax revenue. Tobacco products are heavily taxed and the income is needed to run these socialist countries.

    • Jørgen

      Which socialist countries? You can use pott in The Netherlands, they are very easy on exctacy too, just informing the people via national TV with infomercials where to get them tested and you won’t do jail when you possess many sorts of drugs. NL is a typical northern European wellfare state but like its Scandinavian brothers the people are far more free to do as they please in may ways than America does. These countries all have the happiest, wealthiest, healthiest, safest on the planet. Always the same countries: Sweden, Norway, The Netherlands and Denmark. They are also by far the most atheistic which helps too.

  • Jørgen

    Alternative plan: inform people that the longterm effects are not yet known and that vaping is therefor to some extent a risk. People can chose to take risks if they like, gouvernments in these cases tend to treat their citizens like kids that need to be looked after,…Gouvernments forget constantly that they are there to facilitate people rather than to oppress them and give them the choices rather than taking freedom away from them.

  • Vape is much better than cigarette thanks for sharing this Article 🙂 It really helped me out because I am really into vape 🙂

  • Fred Saj

    I really liked this Article as it was very helpful 🙂 Thanks for sharing but I like vaping

  • Rob

    Canada did not ban vaping, that is bullshit