Alcohol has been blamed for one in eight deaths of British adults below the age of 64.
For every European, the social cost of alcohol abuse has been estimated to be 240 pounds a year, with the annual bill for the National Health Service (NHS) alone being 2.7 billion pounds, the Daily Mail reported.
A major conference of addiction specialists from across the world is meeting at Newcastle University. Organizers have called for England to follow Scotland and set a minimum price per unit and also sought a ban on advertising alcohol.
Eileen Kaner, a professor, cited new research which showed one in eight British deaths of people aged 15 to 64 was caused by alcohol.
In Europe, alcohol consumption is more than twice the global average and represents the biggest addiction in Britain, greater than any illegal drug or gambling.