Popular beer festival Oktoberfest has axed its Dublin event this year due to “unprecedented increases” in its insurance premium.
The annual festival which was previously held on George’s Dock, beside the IFSC, from Friday 14 September until Saturday 6 October.
In a statement released yesterday afternoon, organisers blamed “a claim culture that has developed in Ireland” behind the decision.
“As much as we love coming to Dublin and doing our event with you guys the 2019 event cannot go ahead due to unprecedented increases in our insurance premium,” it reads.
“In Germany we are not used to the claim culture that has developed in Ireland and therefore we have decided to take a break this year.
“The belief that putting in an insurance claim doesn’t hurt anyone except the insurance company is incorrect, consequently great fun events like ours find it hard to go ahead when suspect insurance claims from a small minority of people can ruin it for everybody.”
The autumn festival originated in Munich, Germany and is held in cities all across the world.
Oktoberfest is seen as a celebration of beer and involves large beer tents and Bavarian music and dancing.
Peter Boland, spokesperson for the Alliance for Insurance Reform, a group representing businesses demanding a reform of Ireland’s insurance sector, says the announcement is “unfortunately unsurprising”.
“We are really disappointed it has come to this and we’re very sorry for the festival and everyone involved,” he said.
“We still haven’t heard any commitment from the insurance industry on the extent on which they’ll reduce premiums. Nothing has happened so far that will put pressure on insurance premiums and that’s at the heart of the problem.”
The event is the latest in a string of festivals which have pulled the plug this year due to rising premiums.
In May, the world-famous Ballina Salmon Festival was forced to cancel its summer event due to surging insurance costs.