Ireland's alcoholic drinks industry has rejected calls for new laws to govern drinks adverts on television.

A 9pm watershed and financial penalties for breaking the rules should be laid down in a mandatory code on alcoholic drinks advertising, the National Youth Council of Ireland (NYCI) said in a report this week.

It said that international evidence shows a link between adverts and young people drinking, adding that existing voluntary advert codes are "weak and ineffective".

Rosemary Garth, director of the Alcohol Beverage Federation of Ireland, said yesterday (9 June): "I have read the NYCI report and I find its conclusions and recommendations to be quite simplistic and rather ignorant of the co-regulatory codes that have been developed between Government and the drinks industry."

Rather than a legally binding watershed, Garth said: "The best method of ensuring responsible advertising is through targeted age-profiling of television programmes and websites."