(Reuters) – The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has shelved a proposal to drastically cut the level of nicotine in cigarettes, Bloomberg reported on Wednesday citing a regulatory document.

Shares of tobacco giants Altria Group Inc and Philip Morris International rose on the report https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-11-20/u-s-drops-plan-to-cut-nicotine-levels-in-traditional-cigarettes.

The U.S. government proposed cutting nicotine in cigarettes to “non-addictive” levels in 2017 in a regulatory shift that was designed to move smokers toward potentially less harmful e-cigarettes.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which comes under the Department of Health and Human Services, did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

(Reporting by Uday Sampath in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)