Proposed price floors on alcohol sales in Scotland

Scottish Government consultation (84 pages, PDF) on proposals to restrict off-licence alcohol sales in Scotland.

Amongst other things, the Government is “concerned that competition has had the effect of driving prices down” and invites views on proposals to prohibit some promotions or below-cost sales of alcohol, and on the “proposed principles on which a minimum pricing scheme for alcohol products should be established”. The suggested price floor is 35 pence per UK unit (i.e. £35 per litre of ethanol). Any such rules would apparently be implemented as conditions under alcohol licensing legislation. (The Scottish Government does not have powers to raise excise duty.)

Another suggestion is to “raise the minimum legal purchase age to 21 for off-sales purchases”, maintaining the 18 age limit in pubs (which are “a supervised environment in which drinks measures are controlled”).

Responses by Tuesday 9 September 2008.

For further information or advice please contact Franck Latrémolière.

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