Slovak retailers want Czech liquor ban lifted

Prague, Oct 8 (IANS/RIA Novosti) Alcohol importers in Slovakia have joined a Czech industry group in appealing to the Slovakian government to lift a ban on import of Czech products containing more than 20 percent alcohol.

Slovakia halted imports of Czech liquor Sep 18 after 27 people died of bootleg alcohol poisoning in the worst such incident in 30 years.

The importers’ group said the Czech Republic has already lifted the ban on domestic sales of hard liquor.

“The whole (methanol) problem had to do with the black market, not traditional producers,” said Roman Pots, an official with Slovakia’s Trade and Tourism Association.

“Product that is absolutely safe is piling up in warehouses,” he said, pointing out that no products containing methyl alcohol had been detected anywhere in Slovakia’s retail network.

The head of the Czech Food Chamber, Miroslav Toman, suspects that the Slovakian authorities caved in to the domestic alcohol production lobby and said his office is ready to take the matter to international arbitration.

–IANS/RIA Novosti

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