Europe's health ministries start discussions for Council conclussions on alcohol related harm
Europe's health Ministries have started discussing the Council Conclussions on the prevention and reduction of alcohol related harm on the 1 October.
The Council Conclussions are expected to follow Sweden's priority areas:
1) Alcohol advertising and commercial communications
2) Alcohol and ageing
3) Cross-border trade of alcoholic beverages
4) Harm caused by alcohol to the unborn child
Sweden, which holds the ratating EU presidency has prepared a draft document setting out the priorities.
According to EurActiv Sweden wants national governments to implement the EU alcohol strategy with renewed vigour and to incorporate new evidence on the role of pricing policy as an effective tool in curbing Europe's drinking habits. The Swedish presidency also wants Member States to support evidence-based preventative measures to reduce alcohol consumption during pregnancy and is calling for more research into the links between alcohol and the spread of infectious diseases, including HIV.
Sweden wants health ministers to put pressure on the EU executive to take further steps to protect young people from alcohol advertising. It wants a proactive approach to enforcing regulatory and self-regulatory codes on responsible marketing.
EurActiv points out that this is a hot topic in several countries where drinks companies sponsor high-profile sporting events, several of which attract a young audience.
Sweden intents to have an agreed set of conclusions by the time health ministers meet again on 1 December.