Wednesday, April 24, 2024

NSW retailers closer to Boxing Day trade

The NSW Legislative Council this week passed legislation to reform Boxing Day trading hour rules. The law still has to pass the lower house, but it is expected the Government’s majority will see it pushed through.

Commenting on the legislation, Retail Council CEO Anna McPhee said communities will benefit from more convenience and greater choice as well as greater employment opportunities this Boxing Day.

“We congratulate the NSW Liberal/National Government on pursuing microeconomic reform and easing Boxing Day trading restrictions for the next two years that will deliver choice to customers, retailers and retail employees,” she said.

“Countless inquiries have demonstrated the merits of deregulating retail trading hours, the most recent this year with the Harper Review. This is sensible reform that will end the patchwork of trading hour restrictions on Boxing Day across the state.”

Ms McPhee says retail is a service industry that needs to be open when and where people want to shop.

“In a modern economy, that means early mornings, late evenings, weekends and public holidays,” she said.

“Retail Council research suggests there is no shortage of staff willing to work on public holidays, but importantly consistent with the Fair Work Act 2009, employers cannot force staff to work. Any employer found to have forced staff will be fined by the Government.”

Retail activity accounts for eight per cent of the NSW economy (or $40 billion annually) and growing. The sector employs more than 376,400 Australians, accounting for more than 10 per cent of state jobs.

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