SAB: Licence moratorium harms economy
Johannesburg - A six-month moratorium on the issuing of new
liquor licences in Gauteng is hurting the economy, SA Breweries (SAB) said on
The moratorium limited the revenue the state could generate
by taxing legitimate businesses, said SAB's Egoli division general manager
Leonard Volschenk in a statement.
This was particularly concerning given the present economic
climate, he said.
The six-month moratorium was put in place from August 8, by
MEC for economic development, Qedani Mahlangu.
It was issued in response to large numbers of fraudulent
permits which perported to be authorised by the Gauteng Liquor Board.
Volschenk said it was SAB policy only to sell to licensed
outlets, but there was no system against which the company could check the
validity of permits.
"Only the Liquor Board is in a position to confirm
whether a licence is valid and they have been unwilling to engage in a
verification process," he said.
An appeal against the moratorium was dismissed this week by high court judge Elias Matojane.
He said that while he appreciated the applicants' concerns,
the lifting of the moratorium would only exacerbate the existing difficulties
with the liquor licensing system.