Councils back raising age for buying alcohol

Between 60% and 70% of local councils are in favour of raising the minimum age for buying alcohol from 16 to 18, according to the association of local councils VNG, reports the AD newspaper on Tuesday.

The current legal age for buying wine and beer is 16 and 18 for spirits.
In 2007 the government agreed to allow 12 local authorities to carry out a two-year experiment with an 18-year legal limit for drinking alcohol.
The Netherlands has been wrestling with the problem of teenage drinking in recent years, especially in rural areas.
But last December figures from the national statistics office CBS showed that the percentage of teenagers who drink alcohol fell from 85% in 2003 to 79% in 2007.
Stricter identification regulations for those buying alcohol is partly responsible for the drop, the CBS said.

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