Toronto – The Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) announced that liquor sales by licensed businesses will be permitted to start at 7 a.m. for the duration of the FIFA World Cup 2022. The extended hours start this Sunday, November 20 and will be in place until Sunday, December 18.
The FIFA World Cup 2022 is taking place in Qatar, which is eight hours ahead of Toronto. As a result of the time difference, many World Cup games will be broadcast in Canada starting early in the morning. The AGCO extension will allow licensed businesses to serve alcohol at a time better aligned with kickoff times.
While municipalities may object to the extension of liquor sale hours, Mayor John Tory and the City of Toronto are in favour of the extension and had planned to enact a similar bylaw at the first meeting of City Council. The temporary change supports businesses in an industry that was particularly hard hit by closures and public health restrictions during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Similar bylaws extending alcohol sale hours have been enacted by the City during previous FIFA World Cup tournaments. More information on the extension is available on the AGCO’s website .
“The restaurant industry is a vital part of Toronto’s economy. We must continue to do everything we can to find unique opportunities to ensure these businesses and all the jobs they support come back stronger than ever from the COVID-19 pandemic. I strongly support the move to extend liquor sale hours during the World Cup, helping to ensure that there are fans in seats as early as possible, cheering on their teams and supporting local businesses.” – Mayor John Tory