Home Office Minister Damien Green dismissed suggestions that minimum pricing would have no impact on binge drinking. Speaking to Radio 4's Today programme he said:
Too many of us have seen city centres on a Friday and Saturday night often become a vision of hell. A lot of this is fuelled by very cheap, very strong alcohol.
The point of having a minimum unit price rather than, say, increasing taxation, is that you can target ... the shops that do deliberately sell very strong drink very cheaply.
It is just a fact of economics and indeed of life that if you put the price of a particular product up, demand for it goes down.
Today the government proposed a 45p per alcohol unit price as the minimum shops can sell. It's fired off a long overdue debate.
Drinking in the UK will become more costly under Government plans to bring in a minimum price, but how does it compare with other countries?
The Government is set to impose a minimum alcohol price of 45p per unit. Here is what to expect.