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|The representatives of the parties signing the Memorandum of Agreement for the Responsible Drinking and Traffic Safety Programme in 2019|
On May 9, the National Traffic Safety Committee (NTSC), the Asia-Pacific International Wine and Spirits Alliance (APIWSA), and Vietnam’s Association for Responsible Drinking held a signing ceremony of a Memorandum of Agreement for the Responsible Drinking and Traffic Safety Program in 2019.
Khuat Viet Hung, vice chairman of the NTSC, affirmed, “The active participation of the authorities at all levels and the interest and support from enterprises is a must to reaching social consensus and to successfully implement the government’s solutions in ensuring traffic order and safety. The NTSC highly appreciates the commitments made by the APIWSA and its member companies in the joint programme on improving responsible drinking and ensuring traffic order and safety."
“We have been co-operating with international and local agencies such as People's Police Academy, the Vietnam Women's Union, and the NTSC to implement programmes on preventing and fighting against the harmful effects of alcohol abuse in Vietnam. This is also the third year of the co-operation programme between the NTSC, APIWSA, and VARD. In 2020, we will share the full impact evaluation of this three-year co-operation programme. We commit to supporting the Vietnamese government in its efforts to create and implement effective solutions to raise people’s awareness, educate for behaviour change, enforce strict legal regulations, and develop a comprehensive legal framework, contributing to strengthening the community’s health and safety, and reduce the harms of alcohol abuse,” said Jonathan Chew, associate director, Public Affairs, Pernod Ricard, on behalf of APIWSA’s leadership.
|Jonathan Chew, associate director, Public Affairs, Pernod Ricard, on behalf of APIWSA’s leadership, talked at the event|
APIWSA and its member companies, as well as other spirits industry organisations like the International Alliance for Responsible Drinking (IARD) and the Vietnam Alliance for Responsible Drinking (VARD), in partnership with various ministries, NGOs, and researchers, have carried out a number of programmes on the prevention and fight against alcohol abuse in Vietnam.
These programmes have reached 39 provinces in all three regions of Vietnam. From 2010 to 2017, 1.2 million students have been educated about the negative consequences of underage drinking and drink driving. Additionally, training courses for trainers were rolled out at commune and district-level, producing 1,134 traffic police officers on drink driving enforcement, and 926 local officials on communications on responsible drinking.
These programmes have partly contributed to the 11.6 per cent reduction of traffic accident deaths and the 42.1 per cent reduction in traffic injuries between 2013 and 2017. In provinces where specific interventions took place good results were achieved, such as the reduction of road crashes by 40 per cent in Danang, 37 per cent in Bac Giang, and 35 per cent in Binh Thuan between 2013 and 2015. They contributed to reducing crashes by 7 per cent, deaths by 4.7 per cent, and injuries by 22 per cent in 2017 and helped reduce more than 400 deaths from drink driving in 2018.
Paul Auriol, co-chairman of the VARD, also talked about the association’s efforts to promote a responsible drinking culture: “Our programmes focus on education and raising awareness about responsible drinking and reducing alcohol abuse, underage drinking, drink driving, as well as promoting the implementation of these principles in businesses’ commercial and marketing activities. We will implement more activities to support the national policy on preventing and fighting against the abuse of alcoholic beverages by 2020 and other relevant legislation.”
This is the third year of the co-operation programme between the NTSC, the APIWSA, and the VARD, which includes the following main activities:
- Training to improve the effectiveness of law enforcement on alcohol abuse and promoting the "If you drink, do not drive" message among drivers of motorised vehicles.
- Communications to raise awareness about responsible drinking in the community.
- Communication and education for pupils and students on the harmful effects of alcohol consumption of underage drinking and the consequences of driving after drinking liquor and beer.
- Sharing the result of the study on the effects of alcohol abuse on motorbike and motorcycle drivers conducted by the NTSC, Vietnam Traffic Safety Association and the Vietnamese-German University in 2018.
- Improving the control of blood alcohol content for drivers of commercial transport vehicles