Wine lobby force end to teenage drinking bill
21 February 2007, MADRID - The health minister refused to resign on Wednesday after the government withdrew a bill to curb alcohol abuse by young people.
21 February 2007
MADRID - The health minister refused to resign on Wednesday after the government withdrew a bill to curb alcohol abuse by young people.
Elena Salgado told Spanish television she would not stand after the administration decided not to go ahead with the bill after strong opposition from the wine industry.
Salgado said the bill would be withdrawn "indefintely".
The bill proposed to ban any publicity for alcohol in order to cut teenage drinking.
But the wine industry objected against being included, claiming it would was "heavy-handed" and would make no difference to young people's drinking.
Rafael Puyo, director of the winemakers' association, said: "This is the most reasonable thing they could do."
Salgado said: "Spaniards have not been able to see the gravity of the problem of juvenile alcoholism. The whole world looks the other way."
The leader of the conservative opposition Popular Party, Mariano Rajoy, applauded the move to withdraw the bill.
He called the bill "collosal nonsense".
[Copyright EFE with Expatica]
Subject: Spanish news