Expert: Norway’s Health Minister should reintroduce the national alcohol ban – but with local concessions

Beer - alcoholPhoto: Meritt Thomas / Unsplash
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According to an expert in health law, Norway’s national ban on drinking should be reintroduced, but with room for local concession in places where there is little corona infection.

“We should still have national regulation on alcohol serving,” lawyer and expert on the Infection Control Act Anne Kjersti Befring at the University of Oslo told news bureau NTB.

On Tuesday, Minister of Health Bent Høie (H) removed the national liquor ban after a majority in the Norwegian parliament (Storting) voted against the government and ensured that municipalities with low infection pressure are allowed to serve alcohol alongside food.

The opposition has, among other things, described Høie’s reaction to completely lift the ban as “childish.”

Balance

Befring believes that Høie should instead regulate the liquor ban in a way that ensures a better balance between the need for infection control measures and proportionality.

There are several ways to respond to the Storting’s vote. Both his ministry and the Norwegian Directorate of Health must consider how the Storting’s expectations should be followed up without weakening infection control, the expert said.

Befring also pointed out that removing the liquor ban completely entails a lot of extra work for the municipalities. Now all the municipalities must consider whether alcohol serving should be allowed.

Source: #Norway Today, #NorwayTodayNews

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