Estonians spend a higher proportion of household outgoings on alcohol than anywhere else in the EU, according to Eurostat data, although the figure has dropped slightly.
In 2017, 5.2% of household expenditure went on alcohol, according to the data, compared with an average of 1.6% across the EU In absolute terms, household expenditure on alcohol was €622.3 million. This figure does not include spend in hotels and restaurants, however.
Across the EU, total household expenditure was a reported €130 billion, making Estonia’s proportion less than 0.5% of the total. On the other hand, since the EU’s population is estimated at 512.6 million, with 1.3 million people, or around 0.25% of the total population, Estonian households are consuming a disproportionate amount by that estimate also.
The other two Baltic states, Latva and Lithuania, were close behind with alcohol making up 4.9% and 4% of household expenditure respectively, and Poland, the Czech Republic and Hungary were all above the 3% mark.
Estonia’s consumption dropped slightly, by 0.4%, on 2016. Rises in alcohol excise duties in recent years have probably been a factor in reduced expenditure, though this has also had the effect of driving trade south of the border with Latvia, where alcohol prices are lower.