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Baltic Health Ministers act together on alcohol

On Friday 8th December, health ministers from the three Baltic countries signed a joint memorandum enshrining their common intent to develop alcohol and tobacco policies, as well as those promoting healthy eating habits.

Latvian Minister for Health Anda Čakša lauded Estonia’s alcohol policy in a letter to Jevgeni Ossinovski, Estonian Minister of Health and Labour.

"I would like to acknowledge that Estonia has implemented several effective policy measures for the reduction of alcohol-related harm," Čakša said. "At the same time, I would also like to note that the Ministry of Health of Latvia has been actively working on reduction of harmful alcohol consumption and its consequences," and noted that Latvian excise duties on alcohol have risen since 2015.

According to Čakša, excise duties on alcoholic beverages with 6% ABV or higher are to be raised by 17.9%. Latvia has also decided to raise excise duties for intermediary products by 15.2%, and for beer by as much as 51.1% on March 1st.