Television and radio ads for ready-to-drink (RTD) brands are to be banned in the Irish Republic under a new advertising code drawn up by the Broadcasting Commission of Ireland.

In making its decision, the BCI drew a distinction between RTDs, which are popular with young people, and alcohol advertising in general, according to chairman Conor Maguire.

"Some people feel that all alcohol adverts should be banned," he said, "but we don't take that view. We think there are problems with alcopops (RTDs) and members of the public we consulted support that view. It's to do with the attraction there is for minors, and young people generally, to take drinks that are dressed up as pops of one type or other."

Under the new code, to take effect later this year, TV and radio stations must ensure that alcohol ads are not run during programmes aimed at young people. The ads must not suggest that alcohol helps resolve rows, enhances sexual attraction or social success, and must not encourage young people to drink or non-drinkers to take up the habit.

Maguire does not expect many protests. "While any prohibition is always unwelcome, the drinks industry, by and large, has been very responsible and compliant," he said.