Thursday, 17 April 2014

Questions (227)

Ciaran Lynch

Question:

227. Deputy Ciarán Lynch asked the Minister for Health when he will introduce legislation to provide for minimum alcohol pricing; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [18287/14]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

The Government has approved an extensive package of measures to deal with alcohol misuse to be incorporated in a Public Health (Alcohol) Bill. These measures are based on the recommendations contained in the Steering Group Report on a National Substance Misuse Strategy, 2012 and include provisions for the introduction of minimum unit pricing for alcohol products. Work on developing a framework for the necessary Department of Health legislation is continuing.

A health impact assessment, in conjunction with Northern Ireland, has been commissioned as part of the process of developing a legislative basis for minimum unit pricing. The assessment will study the impact of different minimum prices on a range of areas such as health, crime and likely economic impact. The study should be finalised by the end of Quarter 2 this year.