The South African Liquor Brandowners Association (SALBA) has welcomed the government’s partial relaxation of the alcohol ban.
The partial reopening of sales, and the three-month deferral of excise tax payments due to alcoholic beverages, is a huge relief, but we’re still not out of the woods, especially for off-site consumption outlets, which are still restricted to trading Monday to Thursday, despite our numerous requests to secure this from the government.
Mngadi expressed concern that the government’s use of prohibition in response to the COVID-19 pandemic has had disastrous implications, claiming that the prohibition was imposed without warning and that there was no reason for it.
He claimed that legitimate enterprises sustaining more than 1,000,000 livelihoods across South Africa were unable to operate due to a lack of consultation and insufficient empirical reasons. ”
According to Mngadi, the combined impact of the alcohol prohibitions and recent looting has irreparably damaged South Africa’s brand in terms of investor confidence and international tourism.
In addition, between March 26, 2020, and July 25, 2021, the alcohol business lost 161 days of trading due to the government’s alcohol bans.
“The four alcohol prohibitions have already cost the country’s GDP an estimated R64.8 billion, or 1.3 percent of GDP, even before the cost of looting of the alcohol sector is considered,” said Moore.
“In South Africa, illicit trade now accounts for 22% (almost a quarter) of overall market volumes, totaling R20,5 billion in sales value.
According to the alcohol industry, now is the time for the government to sit down and work with businesses to identify a clearly defined route to economic recovery.
Alcohol industry players welcomed the announcement by the National Centre for Communicable Diseases that COVID-19 cases were declining in most provinces or stabilising.