Thailand wants to tax e-cigarettes - despite them being illegal

The tax authorities in Thailand will be able to tax e-cigarettes. This is despite the products being illegal in the country since 2014.
"There are still vejpers everywhere" says the tax authorities.

The Thai tax authority is looking into the possibility of taxing e-cigarettes. Currently, e-cigarettes are illegal in Thailand, but in recent years the ruling party has on various occasions opened up the possibility of regulating the products instead. The Swedish Tax Agency now enters the discussion and states that the situation is unsustainable.
"There are vejpers everywhere now, but we have neither the power to tax them nor the resources to arrest them," the tax authority said in a press release.

Nearly one million consumers

Vejpkollen has previously reported on the situation of vejpers in Thailand. The comprehensive ban on e-cigarettes and e-liquid has led to a large black market and the number of vejp users in Thailand is unclear. According to government statistics, there are 80,000 vejps in Thailand, but consumer organisations say the number is closer to one million. Moreover, since the ban became official in 2014, new models of disposable guns have proliferated as much in Thailand as in other countries. However, a proposal to legalise the trade was voted down by Parliament in 2022.

Want to be able to intervene financially

Despite the unofficial ban, the Thai tax authority will now propose some form of taxation on e-cigarettes. If for no other reason than to be able to intervene financially against those who use the products.

"Taxing and legalising are not the same from our perspective. It is illegal under consumer and tax laws to drive a home-made car on the road. We want the same to apply to e-cigarettes. The issue of legalisation lies entirely with the Ministry of Commerce." writes the Thai Tax Authority.

Source for this article:
Consumer Affairs Department plans to tax e-cigarettes (translated)

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