The Welsh Government have announced a consultation on its plans to introduce a 50 pence minimum unit price (MUP). The consultation is set to run until December this year.
The likely success of the draft Public Health (Minimum Price for Alcohol) (Wales) Bill will still be reliant on the outcome of the current Scottish MUP battle, going through the European courts. Scotland first passed legislation to implement a 50 pence MUP in 2012, but a number of alcohol industry bodies represented by the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) mounted a legal challenge.
The Welsh Government say introducing a 50p minimum unit price is estimated to be worth £882m to the Welsh economy in terms of reductions in illness, crime and workplace absence over 20 years.
The Sheffield Alcohol Policy Model’s Welsh findings indicated a 50 pence MUP could reduce Welsh alcohol-related hospital admissions by more than 1,400 and save 53 lives each year. Crime would also be expected to fall by an estimated 3,684 fewer offences a year; workplace absence would also fall by up to 10,000 days per year.