Vice Squad
Saturday, March 19, 2005
Swedish Alcohol Policy Recommendations

The loyal Vice Squad reader knows all too well that the high taxes and strict alcohol regulations in Sweden are proving unsustainable in the face of lower cost alcohol in an expanded European Union. Talk of a significant alcohol tax cut, a' la Finland and Denmark, has been swirling in Sweden for some time. This week a government-commissioned report on alcohol policy was released. The main recommendations? Cut the tax on beer and wine by 30 percent -- 40 percent had been the figure bandied about earlier -- and raise the beer and wine drinking age from 18 to 20. US evidence indicates that raising the minimum drinking age is effective at reducing teen drinking and teen alcohol-related problems.

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