LEO VARADKAR HAS said that the plan by Labour Minister of State Róisín Shortall to ban alcohol companies from sponsoring sports events is “not practical”.
The Minister of Transport, Tourism and Sport said that the plan would have a major financial impact on many clubs and organisations across the country.
“It would make our participation in tournaments like the Heineken Cup very difficult, and Ireland would not be able to host the tournament’s final next year,” he told Retail Intelligence, the e-bulletin from Checkout magazine. Instead he proposed a rigorously-enforced code of conduct for the alcohol industry.
“Ideally we would need to bear in mind that Ireland is only a small part of a bigger English language and European media market,” he told Retail Intelligence.
We can ban advertising and sponsorship on RTE and TV3 but we cannot stop Sky Sports and BBC from beaming it in, not to mention the internet.
His comments directly contradict those of Róisín Shortall who has been working on the proposal for a number of months which would see national sporting bodies phase out the advertising of alcohol at sports events of a period of time.
Minister Shortall told the Dáil this month that Irish society can no longer tolerate the level of alcohol abuse that exists, particularly among young people who are more likely to be influenced by alcohol advertising.