Wednesday, 20 January 2021

Questions (572)

Éamon Ó Cuív

Question:

572. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Health when he plans making an order activating the provisions in the existing Public Health (Alcohol) Act 2018 relating to the unit pricing for alcohol in view of the success of similar legislation in Scotland, which has a land border with England; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [2612/21]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

Section 11 of the Public Health (Alcohol) Act 2018 provides for the introduction of a minimum unit price for alcohol products of 10c per gram of alcohol. The 2013 Government Decision which approved the implementation of minimum unit pricing of alcohol products envisaged that it would be introduced in the Republic of Ireland and in Northern Ireland simultaneously. This was to allay concerns that its introduction in one jurisdiction only would impact on cross-border trade.

Legislation to introduce a minimum unit price for alcohol products has not yet been introduced in Northern Ireland. However, in July last year, the Northern Ireland Health Minister Robin Swann committed to a public consultation on the introduction of minimum unit pricing to be undertaken within one year.