'No point in raising alcohol price' - Key
Tue, 03 Jul 2012 6:57a.m.
The Government doesn't see much point in raising the price of alcohol, Prime Minister John Key says.
The Alcohol Reform Bill will be back in parliament later this month for its final stages, bringing in a raft of changes to accessibility and new rules about the way liquor is sold, but it doesn't increase the price.
Critics say the bill will be a waste of time without that and argue that making drinks more expensive is the only way to curb binge drinking.
"They've tried it in Scandinavia, it's very expensive there and people still get wasted," Mr Key said.
"Raising the price can just push people down the quality track... I'm not convinced minimum pricing would do much good."
Mr Key says the previous Labour Government raised the price of sherry because it was considered an inexpensive way to get drunk, and the result was that people bought even cheaper liquor.
He says reasonably good New Zealand wines are selling for about $8 in supermarkets.
"How much would you have to increase the price to stop people buying that... I don't think pushing it up to $9 or $10 would make much difference."
Justice Minister Judith Collins has told her officials to look at minimum price regimes in other countries so she can think about whether they would work in New Zealand, but she doesn't seem to be keen on it either.
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14/08/2012 7:32:39 p.m.
Putting up the price of the problem doesnt seem to the the right way of tackling this. A lot of these drinkers, young and old ( you know, the ones you see crawling around the streets at all hours) have regular day jobs and the threat of a criminal offence against their name would, i thought, have been more of a deterrent. But what happened to to the law Drunk and Disorderly. If the law was more heavily enforced, then their jobs would be at threat and they may think twice about their actions.
15/07/2012 2:39:49 p.m.
Cathy, you are so right. Gun use in the military is so strictly controlled it is impossible to take them home or play with them among friends without full-time senior experienced military supervision.
Imagine the cries of indignation if anyone having a drink for the first time (at any age) had to be taught how to handle booze before they were allowed to have a drink? Yes, I agree, it is impossible to compare being in the military and handling guns to drinking alcohol underage, untrained and unsupervised. At least, a legal drinking age of 21 is an acceptable compromise.
14/07/2012 2:30:38 p.m.
Bob. Sorry but it is impossible to compare booze with guns. Everyone in the armed forces is under constant supervision, no matter what the age, particularly when they have a gun in their hands. When not being used, all guns are kept locked up in the armoury and can't be taken out to go home or anywhere else without strict and constant supervision.
Even in combat and that's only after many months of intensive training there are strict controls on any use of guns.
With booze for people under 21. It would probably be a good idea if everyone goes through the same supervision process and pre-use training as they do for guns, before getting their hands on any booze. If this happened, I might almost agree with you.
9/07/2012 10:43:42 p.m.
dan has a point tho. Why trust a teen with a rifle if yu cant trust them with alcohol? there adults to just saying. Anyway raising the age by 2years wont do much. They are still going to drink. Might as well do it in a bar where they are being watched then out somewhere else. Just seems pointless and anyway the rate for teens drunk driving has dropped dromaticly. Dont let the minority ruin it for the majority. You act stupidly when you drink even when your over 21 because thats what drinking does? 2 years realisticly wont do much.
9/07/2012 12:35:04 p.m.
'Dan'. There is no linkage between an occupation and an automatic ability to manage alcohol. No other job earns anyone the right to drink alcohol as of right, so why should joining the military be any different?
Just as an apprentice takes years to qualify as a tradesman, it takes a teenager years to mentally reach adulthood. Even then, some never do. The age of 21 has long been accepted in Western countries as the year to 'Come of age' and there is no reason this should not apply to drinking or purchasing and being able to manage alcohol in public here in NZ.
9/07/2012 11:10:22 a.m.
None of you people advocating raising the purchase age have explained how it will do any benefit. This measure is in fact the most counterproductive measure you can make. It makes no sense whatsoever to tackle underage drinking by creating more underage drinkers. Binge drinking by individuals of ALL ages are the biggest problem in NZ, and recent stats shows that those under 20 are drinking less than they did in the past five years, whilst those aged 40 and over are drinking MORE.
6/07/2012 6:41:23 p.m.
if they are alowed to join the army they should be alowd to drink, They are classed as adults, they pay tax just the same, they need to be informed beter about drinking while they are young and still at school, the pubs and clubs keep them out of the way of peacful residentual areas, the split age is a good idea, it limits them from buying large amounts of alcohol for cheap, and forces them to drinking in a controled enviroment. both dave and bruns veiw points are good, but the bill has to be fair
6/07/2012 10:40:05 a.m.
Sorry Brun. It is only those who volunteer to join the army at 18 who choose to go to war and that doesn't make these people any more able to handle booze. The police are in charge on the streets and should use existing laws on drunk and disorderly, under age drinking (when raised to 21), or drinking in a public place etc to get rid of any street problems. QED.
5/07/2012 6:37:07 p.m.
if the age gets taken up the teens will leave the clubs and pubs, and will take to the streets to drink, which would be simular to the american bing partys you see on t.v eg (project x) if an 18 year old is old enoughf to go into the army, grab a rifle and go to war. then they are old enoughf to drink. If an 18 year old can join the police force and in some cases be duing a watch in a pub then shuldnt they be alowed to drink? not every teen is irisponcible, its only a select few. Teens arnt the only people you see acting drunk an disordly on police ten 7. (sorry for my grammer, im using a phone lol)
5/07/2012 4:32:18 p.m.
Go Jan & Paora. Agree with you both. Raising the legal purchase/drinking age is the only action that needs to be taken. Apart from enforcing the existing laws on public drinking and intoxication etc.
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