The Kenyan tobacco industry has urged the government to review the Tobacco Control Act 2007 to accommodate new tobacco-free alternative products.

Speaking in Eldoret on Monday, BAT Kenya's Scientific Engagement Manager, Douglas Weru, pointed out that the current law is inadequate to support the application of graphic health warnings on tobacco-free nicotine products.

The Tobacco Control Act of 2007 promotes research and dissemination of information on the hazardous effects of tobacco production and use, including products.

"The current tobacco control act was formulated and enacted and enacted in 2007. Is it adequate? No, it's not, because there have been a lot of changes since 2007 to today," he said.

"There are newer reduced-risk products that have come up so the law should be amended to accommodate these new product categories."

This comes after the Ministry of Health proposed the use of graphic warnings indiscriminately across tobacco products such as cigarettes and tobacco-free oral nicotine products such as vapes and nicotine pouches.

According to Weru, the proposed graphic warning signs will potentially mislead the user since they are not factual and do not correlate at all with tobacco-free products.

"We are looking at information that does not mislead the user, is factual, and evidence-based. Some of the images we have seen do not correlate at all with the products...The message coming through from stakeholders in this public participation session, and which we agree with, is that the images should correlate to the risk associated with the product," he added.

Speaking on Saturday in Meru, BAT managing director Crispin Achola said that putting these health warning signs on tobacco-free nicotine products puts them at the same risk as traditional cigarettes and tobacco products.

"As an organization we believe that given the nature of the category we are in, regulations have to be put into place to govern how the product is produced, marketed, and distributed; so we are on pro regulations," he stated.

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