UK smoking ban: What does the proposed ban mean for Scottish smokers and vapers? What are the smoking rules in Scotland? What are the vaping rules?

The UK Government is set to ban smoking for the next generation, as well as crack down on disposable vapes – but where does that leave Scottish smokers?

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has outlined plans to introduce a new law that would stop children who turn 14 this year and those younger from ever legally buying cigarettes or tobacco in England.

The UK Government has called the move the “most significant public health intervention in a generation”.

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Anyone born on or after January 1, 2009 – in effect anyone who is 14 or younger now – will not legally be able to buy cigarettes in England during their lives, as the smoking age is raised by one year every year, meaning they will never catch up.

The Scottish Government has signalled its support for a similar ban on smoking and vaping productsThe Scottish Government has signalled its support for a similar ban on smoking and vaping products
The Scottish Government has signalled its support for a similar ban on smoking and vaping products

Why are the new smoking restrictions being introduced?

Mr Sunak said the move would mean “a 14-year-old today will never legally be sold a cigarette and that they and their generation can grow up smoke-free”.

Single-use vapes are also set to be banned by Mr Sunak’s Government. The ban is due to be revealed in a consultation issued by the Department of Health and Social Care next week, though timings could alter, according to the Daily Telegraph.

What are the rules on smoking in Scotland?

Smoking in Scotland is prohibited in public transportation, around hospital buildings and in virtually all indoor public places and workplaces.

Tobacco advertising was banned in 2002, while the age at which a person can buy tobacco was raised from 16 to 18 in 2007.

The Scottish Government is still consulting on measures to tackle smoking, meaning rules on the buying and selling of smoking products is to remain as is for now. The Government is due to publish its ‘Tobacco Action Plan’ this autumn.

The bad news for Scottish smokers is the status quo is likely to change, with the Scottish Government signalling strong support for a crackdown on tobacco and single use vaping products.

Public health minister Jenni Minto said: “Scotland has a range of world-leading tobacco control measures, and smoking rates are at an all-time low.

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“We remain committed to a tobacco-free Scotland by 2034. We know there is strong support to raise the age of sale of tobacco products in Scotland and that evidence is feeding into our refreshed Tobacco Action Plan, which is due to be published later this year.

“Scotland was the first UK nation to commit to consulting on a proposed ban on single use vapes. Subsequently, ministers and senior officials from across the UK have discussed the available evidence, recognising shared challenges, and committing to work together on a range of options to tackle the impacts, up to, and including, a ban.

“We will continue to work with the UK Government and other devolved administrations on joint approaches where appropriate.”



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