President Ramaphosa Announces Lifting of Alcohol Ban

President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced that the ban on the sale of alcohol has been lifted. Ramaphosa made the announcement on Sunday following consultations with the National Coronavirus Command Council.



President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced that the ban on the sale of alcohol has been lifted. 

Ramaphosa said the sale of alcohol for off-site consumption would be allowed from Monday to Thursday between 10:00 and 18:00. On-site sales would be allowed from Monday as per licence conditions until 20:00.

He added that payment of excise taxes by the alcohol sector will be deferred for a period of three months, to ease the burden on the sector as it recovers.

Bars, Restaurants and shebeens have been permitted to sell alcohol up to 20:00. These outlets will only be allowed to remain open until 21:00, as the general curfew will remain between 22:00 and 04:00.

Although the president's announcement was also well received by the liquor industry there are calls for the government to expedite the issue of Taverns to make up for the losses that the industry has incurred.

Lucky Ntimane from the National Liquor Traders Council says that they have made calls for a R20 000 once-off payment to ease the burden and cushion against the losses that the bans have had on the tavern sector.

We have now lost, combined, about 24 weeks of non-trading. This is significant and our members are going to struggle to fully recover. We are now worried that as we are opening tomorrow as many as 10 000 our taverners will not be able to open their doors because they do not have stock, they have used up their savings to support their families in the 28 days that they have not been able to trade.

He added that almost one million jobs are at stake whenever the sector halts operations and that the issue of livelihoods should be taken for granted since the alcohol bans will not be sustainable in future.  

South Africa has seen four alcohol bans since March 2020, lasting more than 160 days in total. The fourth one had been in place since 28 June.

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