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Ministry Calls For End To Alcohol Advertising

Source: Vientiane Times

The Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism issued a notice last week banning the advertising of alcoholic beverages and activities that promote the consumption of alcoholic drinks.

The ministry’s notice was addressed to state companies and enterprises, private companies, alcoholic beverage producers, importers, exporters, distributors, and advertisers.

It instructed them to stop all forms of advertising of alcoholic beverages, including on roadside billboards.

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The notice also called for an end to advertisements on all media platforms as well as other forms of promotion, such as attractive waitresses selling various beer brands.

The ministry has appointed provincial branches including departments of Information, Culture and Tourism to monitor compliance with the notice.

Even though the government promulgated the Law on Alcoholic Beverage Control at least three years ago, the advertising of alcoholic beverages has continued and increased, along with advertisements for other consumer goods. These are mainly seen on large billboards along main roads, in newspapers and on television.

Some of the creators of these advertisements have incorporated popular Lao traditions into their material, implying that the Lao lifestyle and the consumption of alcoholic beverages are intertwined.