By Ian Neubauer

Prime Minister Rudd has apologised for the recent tax hike on RTDs to a man who called in a complaint during an interview broadcast on Radio 3AW Melbourne.

“Sorry it’s hurting you. It’s a blunt instrument. I understand that,” the Prime Minister said. “But, we’ve got a responsibility to act when it comes to young people, and police commissioners across the country are crying out for action.”

The Prime Minister cited unnamed data that found 60 per cent of female drinkers aged 15 to 17 were reported drinking RTDs in 2004, compared to 14 per cent in 2000.  

The Prime Minister also cited a report by the National Drug Research Institute that he said established beyond all reasonable doubt that “increases in the price of alcohol usually leads to an overall reduction in consumption”.

The findings have been hotly contested by observers and industry representatives who say the RTD tax hike will simply force RTD drinkers to swap over to wine, which will be markedly cheaper under the new tax regime.

To comment on this story, click here.

To read an earlier report on the RTD tax hike, click here.


The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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