October 22, 2010 / 3:22 PM / 8 years ago

South Africa sex industry did not see World Cup boom

Sex workers demonstrate outside the Supreme Court in Cape Town May 3, 2009. Sex workers fear a predicted World Cup bonanza will not materialise, with visiting fans scared off by AIDS, safety concerns and a law that criminalises soliciting money for sex. Picture taken May 3, 2009. REUTERS/Mike Hutchings

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters Life!) - South Africa’s sex business did not see any spike in activity during the soccer World Cup and the male patrons who participated in the trade practiced safe sex, according to a survey obtained on Friday.

“There were not significantly more clients seen per sex worker during the World Cup period,” said the survey from the South African Sex Worker Education and Advocacy Task Force that was conducted in conjunction with the U.N. Population Fund.

There were worries ahead of the June-to-July sports spectacle that it would lead to an increase in human trafficking and in the spreading of HIV because South Africa has one of the highest infection rates of the disease in the world.

The survey said there was little change in the average number of clients per week — 14.4 on average — for sex workers during the World Cup and reported condom use for males was at about 99 percent.

There were more foreign clients for the sex workers, but “this may mean that a part of the local clientele was temporarily replaced by foreign clients,” it said.

There was massive condom distribution ahead of and during the Cup to prevent the spreading of HIV/AIDS.

The survey was conducted among 663 sex workers.

Reporting by Jon Herskovitz; Editing by Steve Addison

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