Starting from January 1st, Qatar is set to introduce as much as 100 percent taxation on alcohol in the country. A government official in the country confirmed this on Monday, 31st of January.
The tax, which has been named as the “sin tax” is part of the plans to introduce a levy on what has been termed as “ health-damaging goods.”
The new tax policy was announced during the presentation of the country’s budget for the year 2019. It was later released officially by the Qatar Distribution Company, the only alcohol outlet in the country. The announcement included a list of new prices for wines, beer, and spirits.
Since the release, the news has spread all over social media. The hike in the price of drinks in the country has continued to cause a stir. The new levy means that a 24 pack of 330ml of Heineken beers will be at US$93. Also, South Africa’s Shiraz wine will cost around USS$23 per bottle.
Although taking alcoholic drinks in the public is not allowed in Qatar, buying alcohol with a permit is allowed. Citizens can also drink in licensed clubs, hotels, or bars.
Qatar’s restriction on alcoholic drinks has been a concern since the country won the bid to host the 2022 world cup. Although the organizers have assured that fans will be able to take alcohol in some specific parts of the country, it won’t just be allowed in public places because the country’s traditions need to be put into consideration.