KUALA LUMPUR, 24th November 2023 – The Consumer Choice Center (CCC) has applauded the recent cabinet decision by the Malaysian government to overturn the planned generational endgame. This important step, as mentioned by the Attorney General that it is against the principle of equality of law in the Federal Constitution, is seen as a victory for choice and intelligent policymaking.
Representative of the Malaysian Consumer Choice Center, Tarmizi Anuwar hailed the decision as a step towards recognising the importance of individual freedom and the potential negative consequences of a generational ban on smoking. Tarmizi stated, “We commend the government’s commitment to choice and sensible policy. Banning an entire generation from accessing legal products is not only paternalistic but can lead to unintended consequences such as illicit trade and exposing consumers to unregulated product risks.”
This decision is in line with recent developments in New Zealand, where plans for a generation ban are also to be abandoned by the new government. Tarmizi commented, “The global trend is shifting towards recognizing that individuals should have the autonomy to make choices for themselves. Malaysia should uphold this decision and continue to consistently move towards policies that empower consumers rather than restrict them.”
In addition, Tarmizi emphasized that the government needs to immediately regulate vaping to ensure the safety of consumers and avoid misunderstandings or myths about this harm reduction product.
“The government needs to immediately introduce smart laws to regulate vaping to ensure the safety of users can be guaranteed and minors protected. The absence of this law exposes consumers to the risk of products that do not meet health regulations on the market.”
“This absence also causes the public to not get accurate information about vaping which is 95 percent safer than cigarettes and able to be the most important alternative to effectively reduce smokers in Malaysia.”
Previously, Malaysia often referred to New Zealand as an example country to implement the generational endgame, but today New Zealand itself has decided to scrap the law. Hence, the Consumer Choice Center encourages the Malaysian government to consider evidence-based and consumer-centric policies that respect individual freedoms and evidence.