MINISTERS will miss their goals to make Britain ‘smoke free’ by 2030 as Brits flock back to social smoking as pubs reopen, experts warn today.
MPs called on ministers to take advantage of Brexit by slashing tight controls on safer alternatives to ciggies and show what Global Britain is all about.
Wonks from the Adam Smith Institute warned ministers they must rip up red tape and restrictions on e-cigarettes or they would sail past goals of a 5% smoking rate by 2030.
And they say Britain’s hard-won progress will be put at risk as current low rates may be “reversed by an increase in social smoking after lockdowns”.
They want ministers to lift tight restrictions on advertising of lower risk products such as e-cigs and heated tobacco, and replace their warnings with specific messages about how it can help Brits stop smoking.
Report author and ASI Head of Programmes Daniel Pryor, said last night: “We need to make these changes now.
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“Many smokers aren’t switching to safer alternatives like vaping because of widespread misperceptions about relative risk or because they are simply unaware that other options exist.
“Global Britain should also leverage its newly independent position to push for the World Health Organisation to adopt a more sensible approach to reduced-risk products.
“If we don’t make these changes now, what was the point of Brexit?”