The Southern African Alcohol Policy Alliance in SA (Saapa SA) is calling on BP service stations to reverse its decision to sell alcohol from its forecourt shops.
Saappa SA believes that allowing the sale of alcohol on the premises of the BP stations will have serious repercussions on small businesses.
In a memorandum to BP South Africa, Saapa said it has noted the awarding of a liquor licence to the Pick n Pay forecourt shop on the premises of a BP petrol station in Radiokop, Johannesburg.
“We have also noted the applications by forecourt shops at three more BP petrol stations in Gauteng and two in the Western Cape. In response to a set of questions from Saapa SA and to requests for comment by the media, BP has made it clear that it intends to continue to pursue applying for such licences going forward.
“Saapa SA are aware that this is not happening in isolation from developments around the world. BP has applied for, and been awarded, similar licences in other parts of the world, sometimes in the face of fierce opposition from local communities e.g. the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand and some states in the US. We are also aware that this forms part a general trend towards seeing forecourt shops as one-stop shopping destinations for people who are buying fuel.”
Saapa SA is also concerned that the sale of alcohol will increase a culture of drink and driving, expose children to alcohol and squeeze out more small and independent businesses
Saapa SA said it has also noted that some provinces have taken a decision that premises at or near petrol station shouldn’t have liquor licences. This is significant because provinces are responsible for the issuing of retail liquor licences. We believe there should be uniformity across the country and that all provinces should align themselves with the position of national government.