Lithuanian ministries are to participate in preparing a common plan to reduce alcohol abuse in the country, Algirdas Butkevicius, the Baltic country’s prime minister, announced on Monday.
It was decided in the governmental meeting that an inter-institutional plan for solving alcohol consumption problems must be ready by February 15,” Butkevicius was quoted.
According to the premier, nine out of Lithuania’s 14 ministries and a few other governmental institutions will take part in the effort, including the ministries of health, social affairs, education, internal affairs, transport, economy, justice, national defense and culture.
A gradual increase in prices of alcohol and numerous restrictions for selling alcohol, such as a ban on selling alcohol in non-food shops, are being discussed by the government.
All measures prepared by the government will have to be adopted by the Seimas, the Lithuanian parliament.
Rimante Salaseviciute, minister of health, mentioned the possibility of increasing excise taxes for alcohol and restricting the sale of alcohol in certain places and on certain days, such as festive days in the country. She also said stricter control around when alcohol can be sold could be applied.
Currently, Lithuania already restricts alcohol selling hours from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. According to the existing law, alcohol is not sold on Sept. 1, the first official day of the new school year.
Opinion polls show that 54 percent of society welcomes quite strict measures as regards alcohol accessibility; we will discuss those measures,” Salaseviciute told reporters.