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THL: Booze imports from Estonia to Finland drop significantly

The import of alcohol from Estonia to Finland has plummeted by more than one-fifth, according to Finland's health watchdog THL.

mies vetää kaljakärryjä perässään.
Image: Mauri Ratilainen / AOP

According to fresh data from the National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL), the amount of alcohol imported from Estonia has fallen by some 23.1 percent in the past year.

THL said that imports of all alcohol products were down, but most significant reductions were seen in personal imports of beer, fortified wines and premixed drinks.

In terms of pure alcohol, during the period of May 2017-April 2018 travellers brought in some 6.4 million litres from Estonia while the year before that figure stood at 8.3 million litres.

The institute's special researcher Thomas Karlsson attributed the decline to the rise in Estonian alcohol taxes. He said the country has raised taxes on alcoholic beverages twice in the past two years.

"Estonia has begun to experience the same phenomenon that Finland did before," he said, saying that Estonians now increasingly head to neighbouring country Latvia for cheaper booze.

EDIT 12.6 10:59 This story originally stated that Estonians head to 'neighbouring country Lithuania' for alcohol. That was corrected to read 'neighbouring country Latvia'.

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