Ireland is the most expensive place to buy alcohol and tobacco in the European Union (EU), according to Eurostat statistics released on Tuesday.
Irish people pay 170 percent of the EU average when buying alcohol and tobacco products. The cheapest place to purchase these products is in the two newest EU states, Bulgaria and Romania, whose people both pay 64 percent of the EU average.
This large price variation is mainly due to differences in taxation of these products among EU member states.
The figures come as part of a survey of overall consumer price levels in Europe compiled by Eurostat, the EU's official statistics body.
Denmark was the most expensive country to purchase goods and services when all categories are included, with Danes paying 43 percent higher than the EU average. The United Kingdom was exactly on the EU average when purchasing goods.
Ireland was more expensive than the EU average in four areas, namely food and non-alcoholic beverages, alcohol and tobacco, personal transport, and bars and restaurants.
The Eurostat survey also included prospective EU members, among them many from the Balkan region. Non-EU member Macedonia was the overall cheapest place to purchase goods and services, with prices at only 44 percent of the EU average.