Rospotrebnadzor supported ban on selling alcohol to people under 21

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The agency has reported a decrease in consumption of alcohol by young people, but reminded that the 5 million Russians suffer from alcohol addiction

The Federal Service for Supervision of Consumer Rights Protection and Human Well-Being (Rospotrebnadzor –ed.) has endorsed a proposal to ban selling alcohol to Russians under 21, the website of the agency informs.

"It’s a high priority for Russia, where alcohol abuse results in premature deaths of about half a million people each year, to prevent the spread of alcohol addiction. According to some experts, the number of alcohol addicts in Russia amounts to about 5 million people (3.5% of the total population)," the statement says.

The press service noted that teenagers and women of a childbearing age drink beer and low-alcohol beverages mainly. 33% of boys and 20% of girls drink alcohol every day or every other day.

However, alcohol consumption in Russia is being reduced, especially among children and the youth. According to the press service, this is an intermediate result of the state policy to reduce and prevent alcohol abuse.

Earlier, the State Duma had submitted a draft law to increase the age when people are permitted to drink and buy alcohol to 21 years old.

The Federation Council Speaker Valentina Matviyenko has already supported the initiative. She also stressed that the punishment for the retailers who illegally sell alcohol to minors is too lenient.

At the same time Matviyenko noted that the draft law will have many obstacles to be passed, because "certain lobbyist" will make every effort to hinder the age restrictions.

Text and pictures by RIA Novosti