Department of Trade and Industry quashes rumours of new liquor laws


The Department of Trade and Industry has dispelled rumours that there will be new liquor laws coming into effect on 31 March.

A rumour has been doing the rounds claiming that Minister Rob Davis, through his department, will be implementing new liquor laws at the end of this month. The department has, however, denied there will be new laws implemented, as per rumours.

The department’s spokesperson, Sidwell Medupe, said there is no such thing and people need to consider facts before spreading rumours.

The national liquor norms and standards were published on February last year and stated that the Liquor Act of 1989 must be repealed by the end of the financial year for 2016–17 as it creates incoherence, fragmentation and limits the ability to enforce liquor laws in South Africa.

Medupe said this does not mean that there will be new liquor laws that will come into effect on 31 March. He said what the department is doing is rectifying the laws that were introduced before 1994, and bring them in line with those of the Department of Trade and Industry.

“We have provinces that have different liquor legislation, as well as norms and standards and, as a department responsible for this legislation, we decided that there is a need to amend all liquor laws to be the same in every province to make them uniform. We never said that there will be new liquor laws and we urge people not to spread incorrect information, as it is misleading,” said Medupe.

He said concerned residents can visit the provincial Liquor Board offices to get more details about the laws, norms and standards that the department has set out for them. Residents can also visit the Department of Trade and Industry website.

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Thabo Jobo

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