The Irish Government has come under pressure to restrict alcohol promotions and advertising. The Minister for Health Micheál Martin was yesterday urged to act on recommendations from his ministry's own task force on alcohol.

The task force published a report 18 months ago. The Irish Independent reports, however, that, so far, the Government has allowed "the drinks industry to prevail in the setting of alcohol policy and have not been prepared to implement the recommendations of their own Strategic Task Force on Alcohol," said Dr Joe Barry, chairman of the task force.

Barry told the newspaper that the Government needs to show the same resilience towards the alcohol industry as it has shown towards vested interest groups in the tobacco smoke arena.

Dr Barry, who is also President of the Irish Medical Organisation told the Irish Independent that time had come to bring alcohol sponsorship of sport in the country to an end.