Finland tops Europe’s first-ever ‘Nanny State’ index


Finland is the most heavily regulated country in Europe when it comes to alcohol, food and drinks, e-cigarettes and tobacco laws, followed by Sweden, the UK and Ireland, according to a new Nanny State Index published on Tuesday (5 April).

The Nordic country is the “worst place in the EU to eat, drink and vape”, says Epicenter which published its Nanny State Index for the first time.

The Czech Republic was found to be the least regulated in these areas, next to Germany, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.

Epicenter is an initiative by free-market think tanks such as the European Policy Information Centre and the Institute of Economic Affairs, which focus on economic policies.

The Nanny State Index came out of concern with policies seen as harmful for consumers’ purchasing power. These can take the form of additional taxes, limitations to advertisement for some products or policies aimed at ‘stigmatising’ consumers.

Finland came on top in the index, as the country has a wide range of food and drink taxes, for example special taxes on fizzy drinks, confectionery, chocolate and ice cream. It also has an effective ban on e-cigarette sales.

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