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Published:  23 July, 2008

By Richard Mayson

Portugal's wine producers are protesting against the Government's decision to lower the national drink-driving limit from 0.5g/l to 0.2g/l. This puts Portugal on a par with Sweden, which has the lowest alcohol tolerance levels in the EU. The producers claim that the new limit is incompatible with the country's status as a wine-producing nation and that domestic sales have fallen by over 30% as result. The law, which came into force on 1 October, is an attempt by the Government to improve Portugal's road accident record, which at 243 deaths per million inhabitants is the highest in Europe. Demonstrations have forced the Government to call a moratorium on the new legislation.