The economy needs bold and robust action to ensure recovery from Covid-19 emergency

Leitrim Observer Reporter

Reporter:

Leitrim Observer Reporter

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Businesses have been seriously impacted by the Covid-19 lockdown.

Retail Excellence Ireland are warning there will be no recovery if property costs are not addressed by our new Government.

David Fitzsimons, Group CEO at Retail Excellence Ireland said “We need a Government rent grant measure to deal with commercial rent costs over the period of emergency. We have proposed that the rent burden is met as follows: a 60% Government Grant, 20% Tenant rent Payment, 20% Landlord Rent Discount. Many other countries have announced similar support measures. Every commercial lease provides that the tenant can enjoy “quiet enjoyment” to trade. This enjoyment has been removed for good reason by Government."

Mr Fitzsimons said that the retail sector also needs an extension of the local authority rates waiver to, at a minimum, 12 months.

"Local Authorities will have significant difficulty collecting rates until Q2 2021. We also require that essential retailers who remained open, but incurred significant losses, should be included in any rates relief measure," he pointed out.

"When retail businesses re-open they will face extremely subdued demand. We have profiled reopened countries across the EU and all retailers open today are suffering like for like revenue declines of approximately -60%. Government recovery measures must fully take account of this bleak economic forecast. Now is not the time for Government to be cautious, the economy needs bold & robust measures to ensure a recovery”.