MOSCOW, October 27 (Itar-Tass) —— The State Duma has adopted in the third, final reading amendments to the Code of Administrative offenses setting huge fines for those responsible for selling alcohol to minors.
The maximum punishment is half a million rubles. Individuals responsible for selling alcohol to persons under age is going up from the current 3,000-5,000 rubles to 30,000-50,000 rubles, for officials, from 10,000-20,000, to 100,000-200,000 rubles, and for legal entities, from 80,000-100,000 rubles to 300,000-500,000 rubles.
Self-employed businessmen are regarded as officials.
“The absolute availability of alcohol to minors has caused sharp growth in alcohol consumption among teenagers and children,” Vyatkin said. He quoted the state statistics agency Rosstat as saying 80.8 percent of Russia’s young people aged 11 to 24 regularly take alcohol. In the rural areas the parameter is as high as 90 percent.
“The average age at which children begin to take beer and mild alcoholic beverages has been down from 14 to 11.
The existing rates of fines for selling alcohol to minors are too low, and profits from trade in alcohol, too high.