Teenage girls in Malta are some of the biggest binge-drinkers in Europe, according to research.
Malta was ranked in the top 10 of a boozing league table of European nations for adolescents.
Some 27.9 per cent of Maltese teenage girls said they had got sozzled at least twice – more than double the number than in Italy.
The study also found girls in Malta were more likely to drink heavily than boys.
Researchers at the University of St Andrews in Scotland compared the alcohol intake of 15-year-old girls and boys between 2002 and 2014.
They found in most European nations, including Malta, the number of teenagers who had been drunk on at least two occasions had fallen.
But Maltese teenage girls remained some of the heaviest drinkers, with 27.9 per cent of 15 year olds having admitted to being drunk twice.
In contrast, only 26 per cent of boys in Malta said they had been drunk at least twice in their lives.
Dr Zsuzsanna Jakab, regional director for the World Health Organisation, told the Daily Telegraph: ‘Young people are regular drinkers at an age where they should not be drinking at all.
‘As we know that any alcohol consumption at this critical developmental stage in life is especially harmful, policy-makers have a responsibility to implement the measures we know are effective, such as limiting access, enforcing age checks and restricting any type of alcohol marketing, including digital marketing.’