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Thank Fathom it’s Friday

A sideways look at economics

Should we limit alcohol sales?

7 May 2021|

For most British people, buying a bottle of wine on a Friday night after work, or picking up a few cold beers in preparation for Super Sunday, seems like the most natural thing in the world. If Boris Johnson suddenly announced that this wasn’t allowed, it would probably cause outrage. However, this is the grim reality for Swedes like myself, who grew up in a country with a state alcohol monopoly. When I lived in Sweden, there were few things more frustrating than making last minute Saturday plans with your friends to make cocktails or have a party, only to realise that it was already after 3pm and you wouldn’t be able to buy alcohol anywhere in the entire country until 10am the following Monday. However, while controls on the sale of booze are a hassle (and ruined many of my spontaneous weekend plans), the government does have its reasons for imposing them.