Norwegian parliament votes against Solberg’s national alcohol serving ban

Erna Solberg - Siv JensenPhoto: Håkon Mosvold Larsen / NTB

The Norwegian parliament (Storting) has decided to ask the government to abolish the national liquor serving ban. The parliament wants municipalities with low infection rates to be able to serve alcohol alongside food.

The parliament’s position became clear during a vote on a proposal from Siv Jensen on behalf of the Progress Party (FRP) on Tuesday afternoon.

“The Storting asks the government to ensure that municipalities with low infection pressure should be able to allow alcohol serving in connection with food serving,” the proposal read.

Jensen herself is surprised that she managed to win a majority in the Storting.

“Surprising and gratifying, to get a majority for a sensible proposal. There is no reason to have a national drinking ban when there is such a large variation in infection. It is sensible to at least allow alcohol serving together with food serving in places that have organized infection control measures,” Jensen said.

A majority opposes the ban

According to newspaper Stavanger Aftenblad, the Labor Party (AP), the Center Party (SP), the Socialist Left Party (SV), the Greens (MDG), and the Red Party (Rødt), and the FRP form a majority against the national alcohol serving ban.

“Now, the government must follow up the Storting’s decision immediately. There is no reason why municipalities with low infection pressure should not be given the opportunity to serve alcohol in connection with serving food service after this decision,” Jensen stated.

On Monday, the government announced that it wants to uphold the alcohol serving ban. However, after today’s vote, it will have to allow serving in municipalities where the infection situation allows it.

Experts divided

Prior to Solberg’s decision to prolong the alcohol ban on Monday, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (FHI) had recommended that the government lift the ban. 

At the same time, the Norwegian Directorate of Health thought the ban should be continued for another 14 days.

“The FHI recommends lifting the ban on the serving of alcohol, which was introduced on January 4. The FHI recommends introducing the same measures that were in force nationally before the liquor serving ban was introduced,” the new recommendations from the FHI stated.

Source: © NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayNews

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1 Comment on "Norwegian parliament votes against Solberg’s national alcohol serving ban"

  1. Mike Harrison | 20. January 2021 at 14:24 | Reply

    Bravo for litt god fornuft fra Stortinget!

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