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Answered: Is Vaping Legal in Dubai, UAE?

Answered: Is Vaping Legal in Dubai, UAE?

In 2019, the Emirates Authority for Standardization and Metrology (ESMA) legalized the sale of e-cigarettes and vaporizers in a bid to curb the proliferation of the smoke wave that has engulfed the UAE in recent times. This move has been greatly lauded and readily-received as it paves a way for a safer way to smoke without incurring the dangers of Nicotine. According to the NHS, thousands of smokers in the UK have already quit smoking with the help of e-cigarettes.

The ESMA also formulated the regulations and standards for the sale and distribution of e-cigarettes, and has adjured all manufacturers to adhere to the regulations that have been set.

In the words of Redha Salman, director of Health and Safety Department, “Vapes are treated like normal cigarettes.”

So yes, as of 2022, vaping is completely legal in the UAE as long as you follow the standards set by the dictating authority. One of the defining rules that has always been around is that smoking in public places like cinemas, shopping malls, etc. is strictly prohibited.

The new standards that ESMA rolled out will include regulations not just for all components in e-cigarettes that relate to nicotine usage, but also other aspects such as importing, list of ingredients, labeling, technical specifications, etc. These regulations apply to electronic shishas as well.

These standards were rolled out in response to the increase in illegal distribution and sale of e-cigarettes in the UAE.

E-cigarettes are purported to be 95% less harmful than cigarettes. However, Dr Hanan Obaid, head of Dubai Tobacco-free initiative at DHA said that it is best to not smoke at all if you can, because no kind of smoking is 100% ever safe.

If you’re deciding whether to smoke or vape, it’s entirely your choice. However, why take tobacco when you have a safer alternative with an almost identical experience? Choose from over 2000 vape products here

Yes, it is legal. However, some common rules are:

  • You must be over 18 years old.
  • You cannot import e-cigarettes from other countries into the UAE.
  • Vaping in public isn’t permitted.

Foreign laws differ greatly from place to place. There is no law that forbids foreigners from vaping; however, one can get in serious trouble if found smoking/vaping in public places.

Although relatively new, there lies a lot of potential to tap from the vape market in Dubai. Ensure that you procure a permit and other relevant documents from the government before opening your vape store in Dubai.

The laws around this question aren’t the most unambiguous. There is no law that forbids one from vaping inside a car; however, you could still get in trouble for vaping in a public place. 

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