The Scottish government has confirmed that it wants to set a minimum price for alcohol of 50p per unit. The figure – 5p higher than the one which had been proposed in the previous parliament – comes as a 40p price is planned for England and Wales.
The Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats supported the legislation, while Labour abstained. The law will be ditched after six years if the policy does not work after a “sunset clause” was inserted as part of a deal to secure Conservative support for the SNP proposals.
Areas to think about:
- Will minimum alcohol pricing reduce alcohol consumption?
- How should success or failure be measured, with respect to the sunset clause?
- What are the implications for the pricing of other unhealthy habits? Is it right for the state intervene in this way? What would be the limit?