published: 19.09.2012, 13:39 | updated: 19.09.2012 13:41:33
Prague - President Vaclav Klaus said the introduction of prohibition in the Czech Republic was an unreasonable and exaggerated solution to the spread of bootleg alcohol and it will be difficult to lift it, during his visit to Italy today.
Klaus said the state failed in control of the alcohol market and added he considers the series of poisonings that have claimed more than 20 lives a big tragedy.
"I consider such muscle-flexing, simple solution as the introduction of what can be called prohibition by the health minister very unreasonable," Klaus said.
"I believe that it will be very difficult to lift it," he added.
Anyway, the case is "a fundamental failure of the state in control of the world of suspicious alcoholic drinks," Klaus said.
He said the problem is also due to that the state imposed "absurdly high taxes" on alcohol in the past.
Klaus would not comment in detail on the proposal on a possible introduction of licences for alcohol producers.
In general terms, it is always worse if the state starts meddling in the problem, Klaus said.
The ban on the sales of drinks with more than 20 percent of alcohol has been in force since Friday evening.
The government is to decide on how to at least partially re- open the market today.
Finance Minister Miroslav Kalousek will submit a proposal for new stamps that would be used in drinks produced or imported only after the methanol scandal broke out.
The re-marking could take "some 20 days," his deputy Ladislav Mincic said today.
The first methanol-related death was reported on September 6. Twenty-three people have demonstrably died since then and tens of others have been in hospital. Some of the cured have gone blind.
19.06.2013 | 07:24
18.06.2013 | 12:51
18.06.2013 | 10:51
Czech press survey - June 18
18.06.2013 | 07:18
Czech Prime Minister Necas tenders resignation to president
17.06.2013 | 18:28
ODS wants PM in reshuffled Czech coalition govt
17.06.2013 | 15:27