Western Cape intensifies fight against liquor abuse

Alan Winde MP

Western Cape Minister of Finance, Economic Development & Tourism

Western Cape Minister in charge of liquor regulation, Alan Winde, today announced that the Western Cape Liquor Authority will launch a Social and Education Fund during the 2013/14 financial year in a move that will significantly intensify the Provincial Government’s fight against liquor abuse. The fund will be utilised on activities aimed at encouraging behavioural change amongst liquor traders and consumers.

Speaking at the Quarterly Western Cape Liquor Conference today, Minister Winde said: “There are 8834 licensed liquor outlets in the Western Cape. As a government, we have to strike the balance between giving business the space to make profit and dealing with the destructive force that is alcohol abuse. Through our Social and Education Fund, we will drive behavioural change initiatives aimed at encouraging responsible liquor trading and consumption. These initiatives will challenge individuals to take responsibility for their own health and reward liquor traders where they operate responsibly.” “We will also continue to work closely Western Cape municipalities, City of Cape Town Law Enforcement, SAPS and other Western Cape Provincial Departments in reducing the estimated 25 000 illegal liquor traders currently operating in the Western Cape.” Minister Winde added. Chairperson of the board of the Western Cape Liquor Authority, Mervyn Burton added: “South Africa has been ranked third on the list of countries with the highest levels of alcohol abuse. The Western Cape leads South Africa as the province with the highest alcohol consumption. That’s why provision was made in the Western Cape Liquor Act for the establishment of a Social and Education Fund to educate the industry and general public on responsible sale and consumption of liquor as well as around liquor-related harms. We look forward to launching the fund next year.” According to research commissioned by the then Western Cape Liquor Board in 2009, there were approximately 25 000 illegal liquor outlets in the Province. As of 26 October 2012, there are 8834 valid liquor licences in the Province.

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