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Raising legal drinking age from 18 to 21

More proposed changes coming that will affect the way we all consume and enjoy alcohol in restaurants, clubs and bars.

29 June 2015, Cape Town –

29 June 2015, Cape Town –

  • Following an alert by Green Point restaurant, El Burro, it appears there are more problems ahead for liquor licence holders and subsequently, the way we all consume and enjoy alcohol in restaurants, clubs and bars.

What is proposed?

The government has published a national Liquor Policy Review (read the full document herehttp://www.gov.za/sites/www.gov.za/files/38808_gen446.pdf) which proposes the following changes to current law:

  • Raising the limit to buy and consume alcohol from 18 to 21 years of age.
  • Preventing liquor sales from any outlet which is within 500m of a school, place of worship, recreation facilities, rehabilitation or treatment centres, residential areas and public institutions (which would include post offices). Further, no liquor licenses shall be issued to petrol service stations, premises attached to petrol service stations or premises near public transport.
  • Any existing liquor licence held by an outlet which will be affected by the above legislation will lose that licence within the next 2 years.
  • Standardisation of opening hours throughout the country.
  • Restriction of advertisement of alcoholic beverages, prohibitions of sponsorship and promotion associated with alcoholic beverages.
  • Proposal to make manufacturers and distributors of alcohol responsible and liable for damages and harm caused if a person drinks to excess and is then involved in a car accident or a crime.