Rising Fines Aim to Significantly Discourage Sales of E-Cigarettes

The Customs Department will impose fines on e-cigarette importers amounting to double the item’s value plus taxes in an effort to deter sales to the public, particularly teenagers. Panthong Loykulnan, the spokesman, announced on Saturday that fines will apply to importers of e-cigarettes, barakus, shishas, and e-barakus, calculated as double the retail price plus customs duty and VAT.

Panthong Loykulnan reiterated on Saturday that fines for importing e-cigarettes, barakus or shishas, and e-barakus will be double the sum of the retail price, customs tax, and VAT.

He also stated that all confiscated items will be handled like other goods facing import restrictions, such as alcohol, cigarettes, garlic, onions, shallots, and goods infringing on copyright.

Mr. Panthong noted that this regulation is a response to the rapid increase in e-cigarette use among teenagers and students.

Reports on Friday highlighted two e-cigarette-related incidents in Si Sa Ket and Rayong.

In Si Sa Ket, district chief Kom Sangwong led a raid on the Monkey Tattoo shop in the city municipality after reports of illegal e-cigarette sales.

During the raid, the authorities confiscated 4,300 items of e-cigarette equipment, including liquids and mouthpieces, along with 8,595 baht in cash, according to Mr. Kom.

Employees Jakkririt, aged 27, and Arthikom, aged 35, were detained for selling and possessing unauthorized cigarettes. They are expected to pay a fine four times the value of the confiscated items, roughly two million baht, Mr. Kom explained.

In Rayong, local authorities apprehended two individuals, Watcharin Sicharoenpramong, 31, and Natchayanon Wongnoen, 22, accused of selling e-cigarettes and e-barakus in the Muang district.

According to Traipob Wongrat, the provincial governor, officials also seized various e-cigarette and e-barakus equipment along with a list of customer orders.