UK government plans controversial tax on sugary drinks

World Today

A number of new reports from the World Health Organisation are warning that obesity is on the rise as the world marks United Nations Health Day.

For the first time, there are more people in the world who are obese than those who are underweight.

As CCTV’s Richard Bestic reports, the U.K. government is considering a tax on soft drinks.

UK government plans controversial tax on sugary drinks

A number of new reports from the World Health Organisation are warning that obesity is on the rise as the world marks United Nations Health Day. For the first time, there are more people in the world who are obese than those who are underweight. As CCTV’s Richard Bestic reports, the U.K. government is considering a tax on soft drinks. Around the world, 20 percent of adults will be obese in less than a decade, according to a WHO report. In Britain the figures are worse, triggering government plans for a controversial tax on fizzy drinks. The U.K. government has the support of health campaigners, who claim a 40 percent reduction of sugar in soft drinks over five years could prevent 300,000 cases of diabetes in the country. But, the soft drinks lobby specifically uses the example of Mexico to counter UK government plans for a tax on sugary drinks. More than 70 percent of the Mexican population is deemed overweight or obese and government taxes have been introduced to change that. A strategy that’s failed, according to the U.K. soft drinks industry. The U.K. government’s plan could be the subject of legal challenge, should it be claimed that the new tax disrupts the free flow of trade, while the industry already insists its reducing sugar content in its drinks.

Around the world, 20 percent of adults will be obese in less than a decade, according to a WHO report. In Britain the figures are worse, triggering government plans for a controversial tax on fizzy drinks.

The U.K. government has the support of health campaigners, who claim a 40 percent reduction of sugar in soft drinks over five years could prevent 300,000 cases of diabetes in the country.

But, the soft drinks lobby specifically uses the example of Mexico to counter UK government plans for a tax on sugary drinks. More than 70 percent of the Mexican population is deemed overweight or obese and government taxes have been introduced to change that. A strategy that’s failed, according to the U.K. soft drinks industry.

The U.K. government’s plan could be the subject of legal challenge, should it be claimed that the new tax disrupts the free flow of trade, while the industry already insists its reducing sugar content in its drinks.