RIGA - After the system of administrative justice is reformed, residents will no longer be banned from carrying open containers of an alcoholic beverage in public in part of Latvian cities and regions as of January 1, 2020.
The Justice Ministry told LETA that it was decided already back in 2014, when work on reforming the administrative laws commenced, that carrying an open container of an alcoholic beverage in a public place would no longer be considered a violation. The decision has been harmonized with other ministries, the Justice Ministry said.
The ministry explains that alcoholic beverages, unlike drugs, for instance, are not a controlled substance. Smoking, just as excessive use of alcohol, is also bad for health, however, smoking in public is not prohibited, except in several specific circumstances.
If a person under the influence of alcohol disturbs the peace, that is and will be considered an administrative violation, the Justice Ministry stressed.
At the moment, carrying an open container of an alcohol beverage is permitted in four cities: Jelgava, Liepaja, Rezekne and Daugavpils. In other cities of Latvia, including Riga, this is considered an administrative violation.