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The government agency that will licence electronic cigarettes is hoping that there will be no change in the way the products are sold in local shops.

Fears that sales of brands like E-Lites and NFRN Commercial partner Nicolites would be prescription-based and only be available through pharmacies were salved by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency last Tuesday.

A spokesman told RN: “We want safe, quality products available on the market. Following a public consultation, a decision whether to regulate the products will be made in the next two or three months.

“The idea is that they would be made available as possible aids to help smokers quit, so they will be treated similarly to over-the-counter medicines like aspirin and cough mixture.”