United Arab Emirates Download PDF

According to Federal Law No.15 of 2009, the sale of e-cigarettes and e-shishas are prohibited in the country and the sale and marketing of e-cigarettes is also banned in accordance with a decision of health ministers of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). The GCC is a regional political and economic union which includes all Arab states in the Persian Gulf, except Iraq. Although there is no law stating that vaping is illegal, the Director of health and safety department at the Dubai Municipality has said, “If people have vapes or e-cigarettes, they can smoke it only in designated areas" but reportedly members of the public are unclear on the legal status of vaping. Repeat offenders who sell vaping equipment are liable to considerable fines. Recently however, there have been reports that the UAE is reassessing its ban in relation to e-cigarettes and heat-not-burn products. Government consumer watchdog the Emirates Authority for Standardisation and Metrology (Esma) is reportedly reviewing data to assess if the ban should be lifted.
Selling e-cigarettes (containing nicotine) and control mechanisms
Sale of e-cigarettes
Banned[1, 2, 3]
References

1. Vapetrotter website. Available at: https://www.vapetrotter.com/laws/

2. Global tobacco control website. Available at: https://www.globaltobaccocontrol.org/node/14052

3. Tobacco Control Laws website. Available at : https://www.tobaccocontrollaws.org/legislation/

General use and availability
Legal to use
Yes[1, 2, 3]
Legal to sell e-cigarette device
No[1, 2, 3]
Legal to sell nicotine
No[1, 2, 3]
Legal to import device - trade
No[1, 2, 3]
Legal to import nicotine - trade
No[1, 2, 3]
References

1. Vapetrotter website. Available at: https://www.vapetrotter.com/laws/

2. Global tobacco control website. Available at: https://www.globaltobaccocontrol.org/node/14052

3. Tobacco Control Laws website. Available at : https://www.tobaccocontrollaws.org/legislation/

Advertising & promotion
Public advertising allowed in all Media
No[1, 2, 3]
References

1. Vapetrotter website. Available at: https://www.vapetrotter.com/laws/

2. Global tobacco control website. Available at: https://www.globaltobaccocontrol.org/node/14052

3. Tobacco Control Laws website. Available at : https://www.tobaccocontrollaws.org/legislation/

Health
Minimum age restrictions on sales
Yes 18+[1, 2, 3]
Legal restrictions on vaping in public places
Yes[1, 2, 3]
References

1. Vapetrotter website. Available at: https://www.vapetrotter.com/laws/

2. Global tobacco control website. Available at: https://www.globaltobaccocontrol.org/node/14052

3. Tobacco Control Laws website. Available at : https://www.tobaccocontrollaws.org/legislation/

Notes on methodology & limitations

Data has been collected from a range of sources which are openly available online, such as vaping information/regulation websites & direct from country's legislation where available. In a few instances information has been included which was received from individuals specialising in the field. The regulatory picture changes frequently and these tables show the situation at time of going to press. This website will be updated as/when new regulatory information is received. There are gaps in the data available - readers are invited to send in updated information to the GSTHR team.

Country News

  • Monday, November 19, 2018
  • Hooked on hookah: UAE experts report surge in shisha addicts

  • A rising number of UAE residents are seeking help after becoming hooked on shisha, an addiction expert has said.

    Johanna Griffin, a Dubai-based specialist, said there has been a noticeable spike in patients attempting to kick the habit. They had often started smoking shisha, she revealed, unaware that evidence suggests they can be more dangerous than cigarettes.

    Kamal Naji, 27, quit cigarettes before turning to shisha, which has now become a “part of his life”. He enjoys one immediately after finishing work, and another in the evening.

  • Tuesday, October 16, 2018
  • Know the law: Are e-cigarettes banned in UAE?

  • Residents in the UAE are confused over the rules surrounding the personal use of e-cigarettes, both in public places and at home, and are calling for clearer rules on the issue. However, the Dubai Municipality has made it clear that e-cigarettes are treated like any other cigarettes in Dubai.

    Despite a ban on the sale of e-cigarettes in the UAE, many residents are still unclear as to whether they can legally smoke the device in designated public areas.

     

  • Monday, September 03, 2018
  • UAE considering lifting ban on e-cigarettes

  • The UAE could be set to lift its ban on e-cigarettes and other similar products, it has been revealed. Authorities have begun a preliminary project to assess whether electronic nicotine devices should be allowed to be used legally in the country. Currently, e-cigarettes are banned in the Emirates due to concerns over their impact on user health.