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The country’s government has banned restaurants and the sale of alcoholic beverages as part of the restrictions associated with the third wave of Covid-19.
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa announced the introduction of new measures aimed at protecting the country’s citizens in conditions of the growing third wave of the coronavirus pandemic. Thus, mass gatherings of people both indoors and outdoors, including visiting restaurants, are prohibited. The restaurants sector will be able to work only for take-away or delivery. In addition, a complete ban on the sale of alcohol is being introduced. The restrictive measures will last for two weeks, after which the possibility of lifting them will be considered by the government.
The South African Liquor Brand owners Association has already stated that they strongly disagreed with the decision of the authorities because they believe that “alcohol consumption is unlikely to be the driving force behind the current rise in infection rates.” In addition, such measures, according to the members of the association, can harm not only the alcohol sector, but also the country’s economy as a whole.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, the ban on alcohol in South Africa was introduced three times, and the government did not support the industry in any way and did not compensate workers for the loss of jobs because of the bans. The sector’s losses as a result of restrictive measures amounted to about 36.3 billion rand (2.5 billion USD).