TURKEY: Pernod Ricard speaks out over "heavy-handed" clampdown
Pernod is disappointed it was not consulted over the "heavy-handed" measures
The new restrictions, signed into law by Turkey's President Gul this month, include a ban on alcohol advertising, restricting where drinks are sold and consumed, and forcing producers to include health warnings on packaging. Details of the measures first emerged in a draft bill last month.
However, in its first public statement on the changes, Pernod Ricard spoke out against the measures to just-drinks today (25 June) and warned Turkey's authorities that, legally, it must notify the World Trade Organisation of its plans.
The Paris-headquartered group said it is "disappointed" that the legislation was "rushed through" without businesses being consulted. "We are ... not convinced that the recent legislation's heavy-handed approach will be effective to combat misuse," the statement added.
Pointing to World Health Organisation data suggesting countries with tight controls see more alcohol abuse, Pernod added: "There thus appears to be a reverse relation between the severity of government regulation and the level of abuse."
Despite the meausres being signed into law, just-drinks understands the restricitions are not yet being enforced in Turkey.
Pernod said it will look to "engage" with the country's authorities as the rules are introduced.
The group suggested Turkey will have to notify the WTO about the measures as part of its "international legal obligations".
Earlier today, Diageo said it is aiming to work with Turkey's authorities to ensure the measures are "workable".
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