Expert to attend meet on alcohol abuse

National, Normal

The National – Wednesday, February 9, 2011

A VISITING expert will be in the country to share his country’s experience during the three-day alcohol abuse symposium from Feb 14-16 at the PNGIPA hall in Port Moresby.
Brett Bivans, who is the vice-president of the International Centre for Alcohol Policies (ICAP), will be arriving on Sunday from Washington with a warm reception to be held later in the afternoon at Lamana Hotel.
South Pacific Brewery (SPB) business development manager Reg Monagi pointed out during the launching of the symposium yesterday that an international flavour was essential and vital to alcohol-related issues.
“While we (SPB) are a major stakeholder in making, selling and getting profits from alcohol in PNG, we are also committed to our responsibility to manage alcohol abuse in the country,” he said.
He commended the government for the effort done to address alcohol abuse that had gone worse in communities and said they would be at the forefront supporting the great initiative to help in the reduction of alcohol abuse.
“PNG’s alcohol problem is young and we can help to manage it by sharing our views and ideas on how best to manage our problems,” he said.
He also highlighted that in other parts of the world such as China, alcohol abuse was much bigger as they had to deal with all sorts of motor vehicles from cars to bicycles and tricycles and at a much larger population.
Meanwhile, Bivans is expected to share global actions undertaken by the industry to address World Health Organisation’s (WHO) global strategy on the reduction of harmful effects of alcohol consumption. 
Bivans holds a masters degree in philosophy and law from the Catholic University of America in Washington, DC.
He handles industry issues such as corporate social responsibility, self- regulation, road safety, retail and responsible hospitality. He is also responsible for outreach in the Asia-Pacific and Africa regions.