Lithuanian Finance Minister Vilius Sapoka attempted to calm those who fear Lithuanians will rush to the neighboring countries of Latvia and Estonia to buy alcohol after Estonia will cut its alcohol excise by a quarter and Latvia plans to follow.
Alkoholio pirkimas Latvijoje
© DELFI skaitytojas

"It's not the time yet to make any long-reaching conclusions," the minister told lawmakers during the Government Hour, responding to concerns, expressed by liberal MP Gintaras Vaicekauskas, over Estonia's decision to cut its alcohol excise by 25 percent from July and Latvia's plans to follow in its footsteps.

"Even of the Estonians implement their plans, the excise in Lithuania would still be smaller," Sapoka said.

According to the minister, no decisions on cutting excises have been made in Latvia yet. "Speaking of the Latvians, there are no decisions yet as they only have a group to assess the situation," he said.

Lithuania's alcohol excise revenue rose considerably over the first four months of this year. Figures from the State Tax Inspectorate show 132.6 million euros was collected during the period, up 43 percent from the same period last year.

Meanwhile, alcohol consumption in Lithuania has been going down for a sixth month in a row. Last year, a Lithuanian resident over 15 consumer 11.2 liters of legal alcohol, down 1.1 liters from 12.3 liters in 2017.

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