During the 2022 FIFA World Cup, alcohol will not be sold in stadiums. Budweiser, FIFA’s exclusive beer sponsor, had planned to sell beer in specially designated areas around the World Cup arenas. The beer would have sold for $14 per bottle. Some people balked at the price. Qatar’s decision was the latest sign of tension between the soccer-crazed country and FIFA, the governing body of international sports.
Budweiser has been the official beer sponsor of the World Cup since the 1986 tournament in Mexico. It has paid FIFA tens of millions of dollars for the exclusive rights to sell beer at each tournament. It has also created a global advertising campaign promoting Budweiser, which features soccer players Lionel Messi and Neymar Jr. waiting in a stadium tunnel.
In 2011, the AB InBev company, Budweiser’s parent company, renewed its contract with FIFA, which allows it to sell Budweiser at World Cups. The company’s deal with FIFA was expected to last until 2022. However, after Qatar was chosen to host the tournament, the company’s deal with the country was extended.
Budweiser has been the exclusive sponsor of the FIFA World Cup since 1986. The company will pay FIFA PS60 million over four years to be its top-tier sponsor. The company will also run a “Responsible Beverage Service” that trains bar owners and staff on how to reduce binge drinking and drunken driving.
Alcohol isn’t illegal in Qatar, but it is highly controlled. It isn’t sold in hotels and restaurants outside of licensed establishments. It’s also prohibited from being sold outside the stadiums. Qatar’s government has a zero tolerance policy on drunkenness in public. The country has strict alcohol laws, which were recently tightened during the tournament.
Budweiser and other beer brands are not allowed to sell alcohol at stadiums in Qatar. However, non-alcoholic beer will still be sold in eight stadiums. In addition, corporate hospitality guests will still be allowed to consume alcohol.
Budweiser has been a longtime partner of FIFA, and has forged a close relationship with the Qatar government. The beer brand will now take over the W Hotel in Doha. It will also promote Budweiser Zero, a beer with no alcohol. Its current low-alcohol beer volume stands at 6.63%. It will also be available at stations around the tournament.
The beer brand will have a “Responsible Beverage service” that will train bar owners on how to reduce underage drinking and drunken driving. It will also provide a flagship alcoholic brand at certain venues, including the W Hotel and stadiums. It is expected to sell to millions of fans in Qatar.
AB InBev was surprised by Qatar’s new beer policy. Earlier, the company had agreed to a compromise with the country’s government, which allowed the sale of alcohol in select stadiums. However, Budweiser received a top-down order to relocate beer stalls to less visible locations.
It was also announced that Budweiser would give away free beer to the winning country. However, the beer won’t be sold at stadiums, and the company tweeted that the policy was awkward. The beer brand has vowed to continue providing fans with a fun and enjoyable experience.