One retail outlet on average closing each day

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According to figures, 30 outlets closed down in July this year, up from 21 which closed this June and 11 that closed in May



11 September 2009

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A retail outlet is closing on average each day, according to figures. In July, 30 outlets closed compared with 21 in June and 11 in May. Retail Excellence Ireland (REI) has said while 40,000 retail jobs have already been lost, a further 32,000 could go over the next nine months.

REI chief executive David Fitzsimmons told ShelfLife that grocery sales turnover had eroded by an average of 7 to 8%: “Grocery retailers are losing market share and volume to low-cost models…while the average Supervalu supermarket would employ 80 or 90 staff, an Aldi or Lidl would employ 25.” 

Wage rates in the Republic are 39% more expensive than in the North, which he claims “adds over 6% extra on to all Irish retail prices.”

“The total business model of Ireland Inc needs to readjust,” said Fitzsimmons who wants the minimum wage reduced by “double digit” percentages. This could extrapolate out, he forecasted, to reduce all wages by 10%. Social welfare would have to be lowered first however, to avoid a “serious incentive” towards unemployment.

He also criticised the “ridiculous dual regulation model,” whereby both minimum wage and JLC rates operate simultaneously, but praised Tesco’s Change For Good Campaign for retaining money in the Republic.



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