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Russian Shoppers Face Ban on Cut-Price Alcohol

Vedomosti

Russia's consumer watchdog has backed plans to ban shops from offering discounts on alcoholic drinks. 

A new bill backed by Liberal Democrat politician Vladimir Sysoev would re-class price cuts as a form of advertising, 

Anna Popova, the head of consumer rights' watchdog Rospotrebnadzor, told Russia's Federal News Agency that the plan has her full support. 

“[Supermarket] price cuts must be looked upon as any other form of advertising, and must be banned,” Popova said. 

Russian law currently bans alcohol from being advertised on television, radio, the Internet, public transport and billboards. Legislation was relaxed slightly in 2014 in a bid to boost revenues through Russia's 2018 football World Cup. Beer can now be advertised on television during live sports broadcasts and at stadiums during sporting events until the end of 2018. 

Rospotrebnadzor agency claims that minimum alcohol prices and a ban on advertising has seen alcohol consumption fall by a third over the past seven years. The average Russian consumed just over 10 liters of alcohol in 2016, compared to 15 liters in 2009. 

The Russian average remains significantly over guidelines released by the World Health Organization, which recommends that adults not consume more than 8 liters of alcohol a year.

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