No booze buying hysteria

AN EXPECTED hike in the cost of alcoholic beverages due to the increase of excise taxes on spirits introduced as of January did not lead to alcohol buying hysteria, the Hospodárske noviny wrote.

"Consumers only stocked up on alcohol moderately before the New Year celebrations," said Terno market research agency analyst Lubomír Drahovský.

Shops did not clear their alcoholic drinks stocks by closing time on December 31.

However, the tax changes may still lead to an extra Sk16 (€0.42) per litre of spirits with a 40-percent alcohol content. A traditional 0.7-litre bottle would therefore cost around Sk11 more.

Vice-chairman of retail chain COOP Jednota, Martin Katriak, was not able to say whether the tax hike will lead to higher prices, or whether competition between retailers will hold prices at their current level.

Compiled by Beata Balogová from press reports
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