Swedish booze websites shut down

Many of the companies selling alcohol via the Internet to Swedish customers have closed their businesses following a ruling by the European Court.

Two months ago there were around 30 websites selling cheap foreign alcohol to Swedes, but many of them shut up shop before Christmas.

“There are a few sites that remain open,” said Sune Rydén, national specialist in alcohol at the Swedish Customs service to Dagens Nyheter.

The closure of the sites is due to a ruling in November by the European Court of Justice, which upheld the line of Sweden and a number of other European governments that alcohol bought online should be taxed in the country of the purchaser.

The Advocate General of the ECJ also issued an opinion that the Swedish ban on private alcohol imports is in line with EU rules. The Advocate General’s opinion is only advisory.