People in South Korea are the most prolific drinkers in Asia, according to the WHO. South Koreans over the age of 15 on average drink 10.9 litres of alcohol a year.
South Koreans drink copious amounts of alcohol so much so that no other country comes close to their per capita consumption. The reason for this unparalleled liquor consumption is ascribed to country’s liking for Soju- the fermented rice drink.
Vietnam is second to South Korea in alcohol consumption. The country has seen a rising level of alcohol consumption. Thailand is close to Vietnam at third place in Asia.
Mongolia and China are at close fourth and fifth position in Asia respectively. In China the rising consumption is attributed to the culture of drinking where “drinking with colleagues is seen as vital to career advancement.”
Japan, The drinkers’ paradise has seen a decline in the consumption.
Laos shares sixth place with Japan with equal per capita consumption of alcohol. Though ranked lower than other countries Cambodia’s drinking habits are on the upswing. With the increased urbanization the drinking culture has seeped in Philippines that also been seeing growing local breweries.
Singapore has stringent laws for drinking and thus the low alcohol consumption.
India and Sri Lanka are at a close tenth and eleventh position in Asia. While a high number of people in Nepal drink, it is still one of Asia’s least drinking countries.
Despite being an integral part of Bhutanese culture, alcohol consumption is low in Bhutan.
And the most abstinent countries? Unsurprisingly, they are mostly Muslim states where the sale and consumption of alcohol is restricted. In Indonesia and Bangladesh the average citizen drinks hardly a bottle of wine in a year. The lowest alcohol consumption is reported in Pakistan at nearly 0.