His point was implying (at least to me) is by comparison. And that's the important distinction here.
By comparison, the Chinese government has NO WHERES NEAR the level of influence on what affects our economy in the aspect of Tobacco or related investments. It's barely a blip on the radar (if it is one at all). Now, if it were international shipping lanes, or militarily related, or steel or... Then yeah, they'd be far more likely to have a weightier platform from which to "share their outlook", and it would receive a much larger amount of consideration.
Which is peanuts compared to the other things I've already mentioned, much less electronics, clothing, etc. Hell, kitchen utensils have a larger volume, market share, and US investment than vaping.
And while I'll grant you that that's important on the Asian continent (and growing)... There's a reason they had to form their own "major bank". And that's to try and gain additional international credibility. As it was, the other leading world financial entities continually saw manipulation within the infrastructure of their market, and valuations were constantly being adjusted to reflect such.
While they are getting stronger, they're still a good ways away from being at the same level of the Euro, the Pound, or the Dollar.
But I agree with you on vaping being a threat to tobacco. Unfortunately,, here, tobacco has the biggest money, and audience on Capitol Hill. So it then becomes a battle within. Outside sources don't mean much, at least in this realm.