2010 draft liquor bill not anti-business

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Pretoria - The draft liquor control policy, which recently caused an outcry from liquor sellers, is not intended to stifle business during the Soccer World Cup.

Trade and Industry Deputy Director-General of the Consumer and Corporate Regulation Division, Zodwa Ntuli, said the proposed bill was however intended to maintain security and control the trading of liquor during the spectacular tournament.

Media reports which claimed that organisers or owners of any public viewing event of the Soccer World Cup will have to pay R50 000 for a special liquor licence caused an upheaval.

In setting the record straight, Ntuli said commercial establishments such as pubs, clubs and bars holding valid liquor licences were not required to obtain an additional special liquor licence.

However, if any commercial establishment decides to charge an admission fee specifically for the show of the games, they will require permission from FIFA.

"The policy will not affect any rights already granted in terms of liquor licenses issued by provincial liquor authorities.

"This policy is not intended to stifle business, but is intended to maintain security and control the trading of liquor during the Soccer World Cup," she said.

The draft legislation was gazetted for public comment by the Department of Trade and Industry from January 18 until February 17.

The department is now in the process of reviewing the comments in order to assess the need for any revisions of certain areas of the draft policy.

Measures contained in the policy will be translated into regulations which will be issued by the Minister of Sports and Recreation in terms of the Second Special Measures Act.