IEVA (Independent European Vape Alliance)

World Cancer Day - Decrease smoking rates with reduced-risk alternatives


19.7 percent of the EU population are daily smokers. [1] 700,000 people in the EU die each year as a result of smoking and every second smoker dies on average 14 years prematurely. [2]

Smoking is the leading cause of preventable cancer, with 27 percent of all cancers attributed to tobacco. [3] The examples of Great Britain (smoking rate: 13.8 percent) and New Zealand (10.9 percent) show necessary measures that could serve as a template for European health policy. To educate smokers, the British and the New Zealand governments are increasingly using harm-reducing alternatives such as vaping.

The UK government has put the harm potential of vaping at least 95 percent less than smoking. The risk of developing cancer is considered to be 99.5 percent lower for vapers than for smokers. These findings have been substantiated in multiple publications over recent years. [4]

In the UK and New Zealand, smokers are strongly encouraged to switch to vaping [5] and healthcare professionals are encouraged to suggest e-cigarettes as an alternative when counseling smokers.

The results of this strategy: Great Britain has reduced smoking rates from 20.2 to 13.8 percent within nine years (2011-2020) through a constructive harm reduction policy. [6] The New Zealand government launched an e-cigarette awareness campaign in 2020. This has helped reduce the smoking rate from 13.7 to 10.9 percent within one year (2020-2021). [7]

The science confirms that e-cigarettes are a very good way to quit smoking. The Cochrane organization – considered the world leader in scientific literature review – recently concluded that e-cigarettes are highly effective in smoking cessation. [8]

But the sad truth is that a large number of smokers misjudge the harm potential of e-cigarettes. Only 28 percent of smokers in Europe know that vaping is less harmful than smoking. 70 percent of those who have little or no experience with vaping think that they do not help tobacco smokers to quit. [9] [10]

IEVA president Dustin Dahlmann: “World Cancer Day is a great opportunity to underline the importance of Tobacco Harm Reduction. Many smokers are unaware of the benefits that switching to vaping can bring to them. Educating smokers about the advantages of e-cigarettes is an urgent task for EU health policy. Then the number of smoking-related illnesses and deaths in the EU can be significantly reduced.”


[1] Smoking of tobacco products by sex, age and country of citizenship, Eurostat 2022. Link

[2] Public Health overview, European Commission. Link

[3] Statement by Health and Food Safety Commissioner Stella Kyriakides, 31.05.2021. Link

[4] Evidence review of e-cigarettes and heated tobacco products 2018, Public Health England. Link

[5] „Guidance Smoking and tobacco: applying All Our Health“ Office for Health Improvement and Disparities 2022. Link

[6] Office for National Statistics UK. Link 1, Link 2

[7] New Zealand Health Survey 2021/22. Link

[8] Electronic cigarettes for smoking cessation, Cochrane 2022. Link

[9] European adult smokers’ perceptions of the harmfulness of e-cigarettes relative to combustible cigarettes, European Journal of Public Health 2020. Link

[10] Attitudes of Europeans towards tobacco and electronic cigarettes, Eurobarometer 2021. Link


Independent European Vape Alliance (IEVA)
President: Dustin Dahlmann
Press coordinator: Philip Drögemüller
Phone: +32 (2) 791 7759

About IEVA (Independent European Vape Alliance)

IEVA (Independent European Vape Alliance)
IEVA (Independent European Vape Alliance)

The Independent European Vape Alliance (IEVA) is the only pan-European association aimed at uniting national associations, companies, manufacturers and wholesalers in the vaping industry and providing them with responsible representation at the European level. IEVA’s founding principle is to contribute to harm reduction and public health. E-cigarettes have a significant positive impact and should be recognized as a harm reduction tool because vaping is not smoking. 

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Latest releases from IEVA (Independent European Vape Alliance)

Health professionals should know the vaping facts16.3.2023 13:11:22 CET | Pressemeddelelse

Brussels - 700,000 people in the EU die each year as a result of smoking and every second smoker dies 14 years prematurely. [1] Switching to vaping has helped millions of smokers worldwide to significantly reduce the harm to their health. The principle of harm reduction works, and millions more smokers could benefit from it. But for it to really change society, smokers need the facts: and that starts with healthcare professionals. Three experts from King's College London and the public health charity Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) have recently addressed health professionals, focusing on "myths about e-cigarettes and vaping". [2] "E-cigarettes (vapes) are currently the most popular aid used to quit smoking in England and are used by around 4.3 million adults in Great Britain, the majority of whom are ex-smokers," the authors state, emphasising that " ... vaping poses only a small fraction of the health risks of smoking and that smokers should be encouraged to use vaping products ..

Chinese and European e-cigarette associations sign Code for Responsible Marketing17.10.2022 15:04:14 CEST | Pressemeddelelse

Brussels - The European e-cigarette association Independent European Vape Alliance (IEVA) recently decided to update its Code for Responsible Marketing in order to demonstrate the responsibility of the industry when it comes to youth protection. The Chinese association China Electronic Chamber of Commerce (ECCC) now also has signed this code. This is a very good sign of responsibility. The Code for Responsible Marketing contains 14 mandatory principles. The main focus of the code is that “e-cigarette marketing should not make vaping seem appealing to minors”. [1] Dustin Dahlmann, President of IEVA: “As confident as we are that e-cigarettes have significant harm reduction potential, we also recognize that they must be marketed responsibly. The signatories therefore only address adult smokers and e-cigarette users with their advertising and marketing to inform them about the products. Youth protection is imperative for us. We are very glad that we agreed on this with our dear colleagues

Vaping industry underlines the importance of product choice10.12.2021 09:15:11 CET | Press release

The Independent European Vape Alliance (IEVA) welcomed the decision of MEPs to recognize tobacco harm reduction as a tool in beating cancer; but remains concerned that the report approved today by the European Parliament leaves the door open to a flavour ban in the EU. The Special Committee on Beating Cancer (BECA) today voted on the amendments and the draft of the Beating Cancer report by Rapporteur Véronique Trillet-Lenoir.[1] The authors of the report identify smoking as one of the main causes of cancer and IEVA agrees that everything should be done to significantly reduce the smoking rate in Europe. There is little scientific doubt that tobacco harm reduction is a key tool in achieving this goal.[2] Even those skeptical of tobacco harm reduction concede that vaping is many orders of magnitude less harmful than continuing to smoke. According to Public Health England (PHE), e-cigarettes are 95 percent less harmful than tobacco and the risk of cancer drops by 99.6 percent.[3] The repo

Tobacco Harm Reduction is critical if we are to reduce smoking related disease rates worldwide5.11.2021 11:10:00 CET | Pressemeddelelse

Brussels - Eight million smokers worldwide die from a smoking-related disease every year. [1] Tobacco Harm Reduction is a chance for smokers to switch from an extremely harmful to a significantly less harmful alternative. [2] Unfortunately, the WHO has lost sight of this in recent years. But it is not too late to repent. It must focus on the future of millions of smokers worldwide – a future that is much brighter should they switch to vaping – rather than its own counter-productive “quit or die” dogma. The ninth conference on tobacco control of the WHO (WHO FCTC COP9) starts in Geneva next week. [3] During this important conference, measures to reduce the global smoking rate will be debated. The WHO wrote in a publication a year ago: "There is conclusive evidence that: completely substituting [vaping] for combustible tobacco cigarettes reduces users’ exposure to numerous toxicants and carcinogens present in combustible tobacco cigarettes." [4] Now it is important to put this correct as