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Only for adults. Anyone below the age of 21 is prohibited from buying e-cigarette.

Under the scheme, almost one in five smokers will be given a vape - an e-cigarette - starter kit along with support to help quit smoking, the Department of Health (DoH) said.

Pregnant women will also be offered vouchers to help them kick the habit as part of the government's target of reducing the number of smokers to 5% or less of the population from 13% now.

"Up to two-out-of-three lifelong smokers will die from smoking. Cigarettes are the only product on sale which will kill you if used correctly," Health Minister Neil O'Brien will say in a speech later on Tuesday, the government said.

Key points:

The UK government will provide vaping starter kits to up to 1 million British smokers.

That move is meant to help reduce the UK smoking rate to 5%, down from the current 13%.

Such an initiative is unlikely to be adopted in Australia, where the government is under pressure to ban vaping altogether.

"We will offer a million smokers new help to quit. We will be funding a new national 'swap to stop' scheme — the first of its kind in the world."

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