Deadline for Clearing E-cigarette Inventory in the Philippines Moved Up

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    The Philippine Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has announced a significant change in the regulation of e-cigarette products. According to a report by BusinessMirror on June 18, 2024, all retailers, distributors, wholesalers, and e-cigarette traders must clear their inventories of uncertified e-cigarette products by September 7, 2024. This new deadline advances the initial cutoff date from January 2025, reducing the transition period by nearly six months.

    New Regulatory Requirements and Deadlines

    Effective Date and Compliance Period

    The mandatory registration for e-cigarette products came into effect on June 5, 2024. Distributors and retailers were given a three-month window to comply with the new regulations, leading up to the inventory clearance deadline of September 7, 2024.

    Requirements for Certification

    Certified e-cigarette products must display either the manufacturer’s PS (Philippine Standard) license mark or the importer’s Import Commodity Clearance (ICC) mark. These certifications indicate compliance with the DTI’s safety and quality standards, providing assurance to consumers about the products they purchase.

    Enforcement and Compliance

    Confiscation of Uncertified Products

    Leah Ann Arella, head of the DTI Standards Compliance Department, emphasized that starting September 8, 2024, any uncertified e-cigarette products found in the market will be confiscated. This strict enforcement policy underscores the importance of compliance with the new regulations and aims to eliminate uncertified products from the market promptly.

    Responsibilities of Stakeholders

    Retailers, distributors, wholesalers, and traders are responsible for ensuring that their entire inventory of e-cigarette products complies with the new regulations by the deadline. This involves checking current stock, obtaining necessary certifications, and removing uncertified products from their shelves.

    Steps for Compliance

    Registration Process

    To comply with the new regulations, stakeholders must:

    1. Inventory Check: Review and identify all e-cigarette products in stock that require certification.
    2. Obtain Certification: Apply for the PS license mark or ICC mark for uncertified products. This involves submitting products for testing and verification to meet the DTI’s standards.
    3. Clear Uncertified Products: Remove any uncertified products from the market before the September 7 deadline.
    4. Labeling: Ensure all certified products are correctly labeled with the PS or ICC mark.

    Assistance from DTI

    The DTI provides guidance and support to help stakeholders navigate the registration and certification process. Stakeholders are encouraged to contact the DTI for assistance in ensuring compliance within the stipulated timeframe.

    FAQ

    When is the new deadline for clearing uncertified e-cigarette products in the Philippines?

    The new deadline is September 7, 2024, advanced from the initial date of January 2025.

    What marks must certified e-cigarette products display?

    Certified e-cigarette products must display the manufacturer’s PS license mark or the importer’s Import Commodity Clearance (ICC) mark.

    What will happen to uncertified e-cigarette products after September 7, 2024?

    Any uncertified e-cigarette products found in the market after September 7, 2024, will be confiscated by the DTI.

    What is the role of the DTI in this new regulation?

    The DTI is responsible for enforcing the new regulations, ensuring that all e-cigarette products meet safety and quality standards, and providing guidance to stakeholders for compliance.

    How can stakeholders comply with the new e-cigarette regulations?

    Stakeholders must review their inventory, obtain necessary certifications for uncertified products, remove uncertified products from the market, and ensure certified products are correctly labeled with the PS or ICC mark.

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