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SAB cancels another R2.5 billion in investments due to alcohol ban

This follows government's decision to ban the sale of alcohol for a third time since the start of the nationwide lockdown in March last year.

SAB beer crates are being gathered as Fenyane Bottle store prepares for alcohol sales, It will also be allowed again on the 18 August 2020. Alcohol will be permitted for on-site consumption in licensed establishments only up until 10 pm. Vosloorus, Ekuerhuleni. Picture: Sethembiso Zulu/Eyewitness News

DURBAN - The South African Breweries (SAB) has cancelled another R2.5 billion in investments for its annual capital and infrastructure upgrade programmes.

This follows government's decision to ban the sale of alcohol for a third time since the start of the nationwide lockdown in March last year.

On Friday, the company said this decision would impact jobs and the profitability of companies that would have worked it in the execution of its upgrade programmes.

SAB vice president of finance Richard Rivett-Carnac said they supported responsible measures to curb the spread of COVID-19 including a curfew, restrictions on gatherings as well as heightened law enforcement.

However, they disagree with the outright ban on the sale of alcohol because of its impact on their business and their employees.

Rivett-Carnac said they had decided to cancel another R2.5 billion in capital investments due to the possibility of further bans.

“This follows the announcement of the cancellation of R2.5 billion of capital investments in 2020 and raises the total of SAB investments to R5 billion.”

He said allowing the sale of alcohol for off-site consumption with restricted trading days and hours, would have been an effective way to support the healthcare system.

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