Regulation of vaping and smokeless tobacco products

The Smokefree Environments and Regulated Products Act 1990 regulates vaping products and smokeless tobacco products in New Zealand.

26 March 2021

Process for vaping regulations to come into force

Public consultation on the vaping regulations closed on 15 March 2021. We received a total of 2521 submissions including 1375 from general retailers. Focus groups with Māori and Pacific peoples, run by Hāpai Te Hauora and Tala Pasifika throughout the consultation period, resulted in 919 submissions.

Thank you to submitters for their feedback – every voice counts.

To enable parts of the Act to come into force, we expect some vaping regulations will take effect on 11 August 2021. Other regulations will take effect at a later stage to allow for reasonable transition periods.

Next steps

  • There are a number of important steps ahead before the vaping regulations can take effect: The Ministry of Health is currently analysing submissions from the public consultation and will recommend changes to the regulatory proposals if needed.
  • When this analysis is complete, it’s Cabinet’s role to approve the final proposals. We expect this to happen by the end of June 2021.
  • Cabinet will then authorise the Ministry to instruct Parliamentary Council Office (PCO) to begin their part of the process – drafting the regulations.
  • Once PCO has drafted the regulations, Cabinet will authorise these to be submitted to the Executive Council before they come into force.

More information

Please subscribe to the Vaping Regulatory Authority newsletter to receive further updates on the regulations.

About the Act

The Smokefree Environments and Regulated Products (Vaping) Amendment Act 2020 (the Amendment Act) commenced on 11 November 2020. The Amendment Act amended the Smoke-free Environments Act 1990 and renamed it the Smokefree Environments and Regulated Products Act 1990 (the Act). View a timeline of key dates

The Act strikes a balance between ensuring vaping products are available for smokers who want to switch to a less harmful alternative and ensuring these products aren’t marketed or sold to young people. Read more.

Information for the industry

The following pages outline what these changes will mean for industry participants.

Information for business and employers

Vaping is prohibited in indoor workplaces, on some transport services, and in certain venues. Read more.

Information for schools and early childhood centres

Vaping is prohibited within and around school grounds and early childhood centres. Also there is a requirement to display no vaping notices. Read more.

Information for stop-smoking services and health workers

The Act makes certain public health exemptions from the prohibitions on advertising, and the provision of vaping products to support smoking cessation. Read more.

Information for consumers

Information and resources for people who are looking to quit smoking and are considering vaping as an alternative. Read more.

Call for Nominations to the Regulated Products Appeals Committee

We are seeking nominations for members of the Regulated Products Appeals Committee.

Members need to have an understanding of vaping's health and safety risks, and of the manufacture, importation and/or sale of vapes and smokeless tobacco products. Members also need to be able to provide an objective, independent decision.

Nominations close 5pm, Wednesday 30 June 2021.

Read more and nominate someone.

About the Vaping Regulatory Authority

The Ministry of Health’s Vaping Regulatory Authority is responsible for the regulation of vaping products and smokeless tobacco products (notifiable products). Read more.

Contact us

Subscribe for updates

Subscribe to the Vaping Regulatory Authority newsletter update. Read more.

Public health message issued

Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield has issued the following public health message on Vaping Facts. Read more.

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