Retail reacts to decision to move to Level 5

Monday, 19 October 2020
Retail Ireland, the Ibec group that represents the retail sector, tonight said the move to nationwide Covid Level 5 restrictions was a serious blow to the many “non-essential” retailers that would have to close. Many of these businesses were relying on the run up to Christmas to make up for the significant losses incurred earlier in the year. There is very real concern that many vulnerable retail businesses will not survive Covid. The group called for a clear and comprehensive strategy for the unwinding of these restrictions.

Retail Ireland Director Arnold Dillon said: “Many retailers are facing into a deeply uncertain Christmas trading period. Many thousands of businesses will have to close and tens of thousands of retail workers will be out of work. It is important that customers support affected businesses through online and click and collect services where possible. While important government supports are in place, those retailers without a developed online offering are particularly exposed. The restoration of the Pandemic Unemployment Payment will provide important support to many and is very welcome. It is crucial that these measures work and we are in a place to reopen retail in advance of Christmas. We simply cannot contemplate serious rolling restrictions into the future.”