New Zealand Law Society

Navigation menu

Speedy passage for Rugby World Cup sale of alcohol bill

29 August 2019

Parliament has given a third reading to the Sale and Supply of Alcohol (Rugby World Cup 2019 Extended Trading Hours) Amendment Bill.

The bill passed through all three readings and the committee stage on 28 August after being introduced by Justice Minister Andrew Little on 26 August. The third reading passed by 112 votes to 8, with the Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand voting against.

The bill amends the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012 in relation to licensees that hold an on-licence under the Act and that wish to trade outside their licensed trading hours for the purpose of televising a game of the Rugby World Cup 2019.

The 2019 Rugby World Cup will take place from 20 September to 2 November 2019. As the games will be played in Japan, time zone difference means some games will be broadcast in New Zealand outside permitted trading hours for some licensed premises.

Japan is three hours behind New Zealand at present. New Zealand Daylight Saving begins on Sunday, 29 September and Japan will be four hours behind.

According to the official Rugby World Cup schedule, pool games for New Zealand will take place (New Zealand Time) at 9:45pm on 21 September (South Africa), 11:15pm on 2 October (Canada), 5:45pm on 6 October (Namibia) and 5:45pm on 12 October (Italy). The quarterfinal for the winner of New Zealand's pool will be at 11:15pm on 19 October, while the pool runner-up game will be at 11:15pm on 20 October. The semifinals are at 9:00pm on 26 October and 10:00pm on 27 October, while the final is at 10:00pm on 2 November.

Allowing three hours for the match and then after-match interviews and analysis, the latest that coverage of any of the games possibly involving New Zealand will end appears to be around 2:15am.

When District Licensing Committees are considering a special licence application it is usually required that the event take place on the premises – for example a guest speaker, a band or a fundraising event. Televising the Rugby world Cup does not align well with these types of events, therefore making it difficult for some licensees to extend their trading hours.

The amendments will mean that the licensees will not have to apply for a special licence to televise games outside their usual trading hours. The amendments will be in force until the end of the Rugby World Cup 2019.

Part 1, clause 4, sets out the provisions that extend the trading hours, namely new sections 45A to 45G.

New section 45A states the purpose of new sections 45B to 45G, which is to facilitate extended trading hours for some premises.

New section 45B defines some of the terms used in new sections 45A to 45G.

New section 45C applies new section 45D to 45F to certain licensed premises.

New section 45D provides for extended trading hours.

New section 45E sets out the effect of the extensions.

New section 45F requires the display of certain information about the extensions.

Clause 5 inserts new Schedule 4 which sets out the game details relevant to the extensions.

Clause 6 provides for the repeal of the extended trading hours provisions set out in the bill on 4 November 2019.

Part 2 contains related amendments.

Clause 7 amends section 44 (permitted trading hours for premises without a relevant local alcohol policy) and provides that new sections 45A to 45G override that section.

Clause 8 amends section 45 (permitted trading hours for premises with a relevant local alcohol policy) and provides that new sections 45A to 45G override that section.

Clause 9 amends section 50 (compliance with one-way door restrictions in local alcohol policies) and club licences) and provides that new sections 45A to 45G override section 50.

The bill comes into force the day after it receives the Royal assent.

Last updated on the 16th September 2019