Illustrative image (Source: VNA)
 
Hanoi (VNA) – The Ministry of Health held a seminar in Hanoi on November 8 on Vietnam’s international commitments to preventing the harmful effects of alcohol and beer, as well as the recommendations from international organisations towards the draft law on the prevention and combat of alcohol abuse.

Nguyen Huy Quang, head of the ministry’s Department of Legal Affairs, said 44.2 percent of men and 1.2 percent of women in Vietnam use alcohol and beer at a hazardous level.

Under the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Agenda 2030 adopted by leaders of 154 member nations, including Vietnam, at the 70th session of the UN General Assembly, Vietnam set the goal of reducing the number of alcohol users at hazardous levels by 10 percent by 2030.

Quang called for creating a strong legal corridor to achieve the goal, saying that the issuance of the law on preventing and combating the harmful effects of alcohol and beer is necessary to deliver Vietnam’s commitments towards sustainable development.

Three months since the draft law was up for public feedback, 10 letters of suggestion by six domestic and foreign organisations have been sent to leaders of the Vietnamese legislature and Government.

They called on the Government to enforce policies on preventing and combating the harmful effects of alcohol and specifically beer as recommended by the World Health Organisation (WHO), and place the protection of public health and the national sustainable development above others in the law-building process.

They suggested issuing regulations on banning advertising and promotion activities, and further restricting the availability of alcohol and beer to those aged below 18.

Representatives from the WHO, the Vietnam Non-Communicable Disease Prevention Alliance, the HealthBridge Foundation of Canada in Vietnam, and the Global Alcohol Policy Alliance attended the event. –VNA