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Scottish Government Seeks to Set Minimum Pricing for Alcohol

The Scottish government said it proposed to set a minimum price for a unit of alcohol as a condition of licence.

In a bill published today, the government also set the formula for calculating the minimum price. A first attempt by the Scottish National Party to enact a similar proposal failed during the last parliament. The SNP won an overall majority in parliamentary elections in May.

“Scotland’s unhealthy relationship with alcohol is one of the most pressing public health challenges facing us as a nation and we need to take action to tackle it,” said Cabinet Secretary for Health and Wellbeing Nicola Sturgeon in an emailed statement.

Alcohol sales are now 23 percent higher in Scotland than in England and Wales, the biggest difference ever recorded during the 17 years measured since 1994, according to figures from NHS Health Scotland.

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