Coalition parties criticize plans for smoking, drinking and obesity

1 November 2018

Three of the four coalition parties do not fully support state secretary Paul Blokhuis’ plans to clamp down on smoking, obesity and alcohol abuse, sources have told broadcaster RTL Nieuws. He is going too fast. Only Blokhuis' own party, the Protestant party ChristenUnie, fully supports him.

Blokhuis wants to put up the price of cigarettes to €10 a pack, stop shops from offering cut-price alcohol and cut the price of sugar-free soft drinks, the broadcaster said. The intention to increase the excise duty on alcohol every year has already been scrapped, according to insiders.

When Blokhuis wanted to outline his plans at a recent cabinet meeting, he was stopped and told to first make sure he has enough support among MPs, RTL reported on Thursday. In particular his plans regarding alcohol are met with resistance.

"The state secretary is now homing in on everyone who enjoys a glass, and that should not be the aim,’ one insider told the broadcaster. He must focus on alcohol abuse, not on alcohol use."



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