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The steep rise in alcohol duties announced in yesterday's Budget, which the Government says will help to tackle binge drinking, follows the publication of its review of the 2005 Licensing Act last week when the Government reiterated its commitment to 24-hour licensing. Ben Cooper asks whether the two policies represent a consistent approach to tackling excessive consumption or whether the duty hike is an opportunistic attempt to boost much-needed tax revenues through the age-old method - the sin tax.


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