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The Thai Health Promotion Foundation (ThaiHealth) has held a meeting to seek plans to lower the number of new drinkers after reports suggested that alcohol sales remain rampant around educational institutes.
Public Health Minister Dr Piyasakol Sakolsadhyadorn presided over the 9th National Alcohol Conference, which came under the concept of joining forces to protect children and youth from the dangers of drinking. Organized by ThaiHealth, the event served as a platform for concerned officials to exchange opinions and brainstorm measures for preventing more youngsters from experimenting with alcohol.
Based on a survey that was conducted on 15 universities across the country, sales of alcoholic beverages were still found in their surrounding areas. Drinking among secondary school students was also said to be on the rise.
Among the suggestions made at the meeting were an absolute ban on drinking for youths aged under 20, a ban on all forms of advertisements and sales of alcohol near schools and periodic increases of alcohol tax to discourage young drinkers.
Dr Piyasakol affirmed the government is paying great attention to the problem of underage drinking and is cooperating with related units to address it, claiming the habit is the starting point of addiction.