Mmegi Online :: Alcohol levy didn't work, made drinkers desperate - BIDPA study
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Friday 21 September 2018, 15:09 pm.
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Alcohol levy didn't work, made drinkers desperate - BIDPA study

A study by the Botswana Institute of Development Policy Analysis (BIDPA) found that the alcohol levy did not only fail to reduce the consumption rate, but actually forced drinkers into more desperate alternatives, trade ministry executives have revealed.
By Mbongeni Mguni Tue 11 Sep 2018, 16:34 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: Alcohol levy didn't work, made drinkers desperate - BIDPA study








The Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry commissioned BIDPA to research the issue last year and is now sharing the results, as a nationwide review of the levy and restrictive alcohol trading conditions gather momentum.

This morning, the ministry’s permanent secretary, Peggy Serame told members of the Public Accounts Committee that the levy had achieved the opposite of what it was intended to achieve. 

“One of the highlights of the BIDPA study was that in terms of consumption, nothing much has changed since the levy’s introduction,” she said.

“Due to the perception that the levy made alcohol expensive, people have resorted to using other forms to get intoxicated.”

“For the industry, the levy has made life very difficult and they

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could not pass the impact onto consumers.

“In the review, we are looking at the impact on the industry, consumers and issues around abuse of alcohol.”

Pressed further by Tati East legislator, Samson Moyo Guma, Serame conceded that the ongoing review of the alcohol policy could lead to a cancellation of the levy altogether. 

“The review could result in the reduction of the levy. It’s possible it could be cancelled but at this point I cannot say,” she said.

Originally introduced in 2008, the alcohol levy was raised every year until 2015 at which point it was sitting at 55%.

The levy has since been revised to between 50 and 55% depending on the alcoholic volume of the liquor.

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