The Taiwan government has decided to loosen restrictions regarding selling alcohol on the internet.

On April 28, the Executive Yuan passed the draft amendment of “The Tobacco and Alcohol Administration Act.” Once the Legislative Yuan passes the amendment, consumers will be able to purchase alcohol from online stores.

The current act regulates that alcohol can not be sold from vending machines, through mail, online stores or other channels that can’t identify the buyer’s age or identity.

Minister of Finance Chang Sheng-ford states the new bill has rigorous restrictions on retailers, deliverers and people who pick up the purchases. Retailers need to go through examination of local authorities and pay a registration fee. Trading locations are restricted to convenience stores and products cannot be home delivered. The deliverer also holds responsibility of verifying whether or not the person who picks up the purchase is over 18 years old by checking the person’s ID card. In addition, purchases can only be placed through credit cards, which teenagers tend not to own.

Penalties have also been made more severe. Chang San-cheng says violators can be fined up to NT$ 250,000 (approximately US$7,700). Registrations of retailers that break the law can be suspended and can’t be reapplied within a year. Deliverers that breach the law are also not allowed to deliver purchases for a year.

Premier Chang San-cheng states that the amendment of the law is to connect the world of the internet with the real one.

China Times
Liberty Times