National legislation and policies to reduce alcohol-related harm in the European Union



Memo, OFDT, 16 p.
July 2020

Based mainly on data published by the WHO, this note aims to provide an overview of the main legislative and regulatory measures taken by the different EU countries to reduce harmful alcohol consumption. It also provides information on France's position in relation to other countries. The analysis focuses on five themes defined by the WHO which bring together the most important recommended measures: limiting drinking and driving and the accessibility of alcoholic beverages, making alcohol more expensive, limiting alcohol advertising and marketing, and informing consumers about the consequences of alcohol.

France is one of the countries within the EU that has adopted the largest number of measures to limit harmful alcohol consumption recommended by the WHO. There is, however, room for improvement, particularly with regard to action on alcohol prices, which, compared to other EU countries, remains low. In terms of prevention, the WHO criteria, even if very limited, show that improvements must be sought in any case.

The comparison of policies to reduce harmful alcohol consumption based on binary responses on the formal existence in each country from a set of measures is an initial piece of information. This approach would need to be complemented by evaluations of the effective implementation of these measures.

Author : Christophe Palle

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