Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Alcohol consumption increasing in Myanmar

YANGON—The rate of alcohol consumption is rising in Myanmar, with local production of beer, wine and spirits at more than 25 million gallons annually, according to the local reports.

Tens of thousands of gallons of wine, beer, and hard alcohol—both legal and illegal—are being imported from foreign countries and are now penetrating the local market.

There are state-owned beer and wine factories in Myanmar, but the Myanmar Investment Commission has also allowed permits for foreign beer companies to operate here, subject to scrutiny by respective state and regional government authorities.

The foreign beer companies will cooperate with local firms owned by the citizens as a joint venture.

A research paper submitted at a medical research conference in Myanmar last year found that alcohol consumption among males was 31 percent but female alcohol consumption was only 1.5 percent, among the 7,000 people surveyed in Yangon. If a survey of alcohol consumption were held across the country, the rate of alcohol consumption would increase above those numbers, suggest the researchers.

“Those who drink a lot of alcohol could have seriously damaged livers depending on how much alcohol they’re drinking. The liver is one of the most important organs for human beings and does a lot of work. That’s why alcohol drinkers can face many side effects because of damage to their livers,” said Dr. Win Sithu.

Taxation of alcohol, beer and wine is only 50 percent, whether it is imported or domestic.

According to the announcement of the Ministry of National Planning and Economic Development, alcohol and beer manufacturing in local was 24.8 million gallons in 2011-2012 fiscal year. During the current fiscal year (2013-2014), 25.2 million gallons of alcohol and beer produced within nine month up to the end of December.

source: Eleven Myanmar
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