IMPACT OF BAR CLOSURES

July 31, 2020 - 5 Minutes Read - By Abigael Ndanu

It is estimated that the ban on consumption of alcohol in restaurants and eateries as well as the closure of bars will lead to a supply chain losses estimated at well over Kes. 10Billion and will lead to close to 60,000 job losses.

This is just for the period between July and September, 2020.

In addition, this will lead to revenue losses at both National and Sub-national levels for the Government. For instance, in terms of Cess and liquor licenses currently estimated at Kes. 11 Million and Kes. 2 Billion respectively on an annual basis will reduce to Kes. 500 Million for license fees and Kes. 2.9 Million in regards to Cess. 

The losses herein stated do not take into account the impact that these measures would have on other vector industries dependent on cash transfers/ transactions.

Whereas it is understood that the preservation of life is paramount and is rightly the primary concern for the Government, the directives presented give a misconception that that Covid-19 is caused by visiting bars. Efforts to #flattenthecurve and should ultimately be reflective of the reality on the ground which is that people are spending copious amounts of time in crowded market places, using public transport and walking around in public areas without observing any social distancing or wearing masks correctly.

A balance is needed between saving lives and ensuring that the economy is sustained at levels that would enable the country to bounce back. 

In order to achieve this, multi-stakeholder engagement is needed between private sector and Government to ensure that more adverse directives are not sanctioned and instead policies that are supportive to business are effected. 

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