HELSINKI, Finland — Black market prices have soared and hundreds of smugglers are behind bars as Finland endures a strike that has shut down all stores run by the national liquor monopoly.
Police inspector Aulis Kosonen said the soaring liquor prices caused by the walkout on March 29 are "a fact of life at a time of strong demand and small supply."
"Over the weekend, one half-liter of hard liquor brought 300 markkas ($47) on the black market," Kosonen said. The normal retail price for that amount, corresponding to a little more than a pint, is $9.
The strike involves 200 hundred stores of the state monopoly Alko, which have been closed since 2,200 salespersons walked out in a dispute over wages and working hours.