10 May 2012

Brazil backs World Cup beer sales

6:31 pm on 10 May 2012

Football world governing body FIFA's had its way with Brazil's senate, forcing the approval of the sale of beer during 2014 World Cup matches.

The bill will also allow beer to be sold in stadiums during next year's Confederations Cup, but some lawmakers have expressed concern at the move.

Alcohol sales in sports arenas have been banned in Brazil since 2003, and the lawmakers fear its renewed availability could lead to violence.

Seven of the 12 cities that will host World Cup games have laws banning beer sales.

The bill also gives FIFA exclusive rights to pictures, sound and other forms of expression linked to the World Cup, with criminal and financial sanctions for any illegal reproduction.

It will also reserve one per cent of admission tickets for the handicapped and mandates that 300,000 tickets should be sold at discounted prices.

Brazil is spending millions of dollars building and upgrading highways, airports and stadiums for the event.

But critics, including former football great Romario, now a lawmaker, have objected that the projects are too expensive and behind schedule.