Alcohol minimum unit pricing could be delayed by Brexit and North’s political crisis | Irish Times

The introduction of minimum unit pricing for alcohol could be delayed because of Brexit and the failure to re-establish the Northern Ireland Executive, the Dáil has heard.

The Government hoped to introduce the measure at the same time as in the North to ensure the same price per unit of alcohol on both sides of the border.

This form of pricing increases the cost of the cheapest and strongest alcohol by setting a floor price below which drink cannot be sold.

It is estimated that the introduction of a minimum price per unit of alcohol will cut consumption among the heaviest drinkers by 15 per cent.

But Minister of State for Health Catherine Byrne said “we are all aware of the difficulties facing Northern Ireland, not only in terms of restarting its administration but also the possible impacts of Brexit”.

Responding at the end of the second stage or introductory Dáil debate on the Public Health (Alcohol) Bill, Ms Byrne said Brexit and the difficulties in restarting the North’s Administration “were not envisaged at the time of the Government decision therefore we will need to reflect further at the enactment of the Bill before deciding on the timing of the commencement of this provision”.

Read complete article here:

Alcohol minimum unit pricing could be delayed by Brexit and North’s political crisis.