The price of beer in Qatar, which has long been deliberately prohibitive in the largely Muslim country, got significantly more expensive in the new year.
Here’s the deal…
Qatar is an oil-rich peninsular Arab country made up of an arid desert expanse surrounded almost entirely by shoreline and beaches and its capital, Doha, known for its futuristic skyscrapers and ultramodern architecture inspired by ancient Islamic design.
Home to the 2022 World Cup “Qatar welcomed the new year by implementing a 100 percent tax on alcohol, doubling prices overnight and sending the cost of a 12-pack of beer jumping to $78” according to ABC News …and igniting social media outrage from the region’s non-Muslim populace.
To be fair alcohol imports weren’t alone in being subjected to this surprise tax imposition. On January 1st Qatar’s General Authority of Customs also imposed the burdensome tax levy on tobacco products, energy drinks and pork products (a 14 oz. packages of bacon now costs $15 in Doha).
Beer and alcohol production are outlawed in Qatar and only foreign nationals are permitted to drink in the country. What alcohol is available is confined to high-end hotel bars and restaurants, as well as to a single store on the outskirts of the capital city.
But when you factor in that as much as 88 percent of Qatar’s population is said to be made up of foreigners…and that the country will be attracting millions of beer-crazed soccer fans when they present the world Cup in 2022…you realize the mind-boggling implications of what some are calling ‘The Mother of all Sin Taxes.’
The 2018 World Cup in Russia, experienced cataclysmic beer shortages due both a carbon dioxide shortage in Europe and the country not understanding that World Cup fans drink a lot.
And now Qatar has imposed taxes that raises the price of Heineken to almost $100 a case.
And don’t try to sneak alcohol into the country either, authorities will confiscate alcohol at Doha Airport, and drinking in public is banned as well. Drinking at the 2022 World Cup will be limited to specially designated locations at the sporting events…You explain that to the visiting hordes.