Lockdown: Reopen malls and save jobs, retailers plead with Maharashtra

Updated: Jul 08, 2020, 07:26 IST | Dharmendra Jore | Mumbai

With the de-growth of 77% in malls during the second half of June, the retailers association calls on Aaditya Thackeray to help resume businesses

Malls have been closed for over three months due to the lockdown. File pic
Malls have been closed for over three months due to the lockdown. File pic

A day after the hospitality industry got a go-ahead to resume operations, the Retailers Association of India (RAI) on Tuesday requested the state government to allow malls to reopen to save jobs as well as the entire retail chain.

During a survey by the RAI, over 100 big and small retailers revealed that there has been no significant growth in business even in the second half of June.

Retailers witnessed 67 per cent de-growth from June 15 to June 30, compared to the corresponding period last year. Malls that have been closed for over three months saw 77 per cent de-growth during the same period.

In a tweet, the association implored Tourism Minister Aaditya Thackeray to reopen malls. This request was made in line with the state government's directive to reopen hotels outside Containment Zones, RAI stated in a statement.

"Dear Shri @AUThackeray, good to know that hotels are now allowed to open. We request you to help us reopen malls in Maharashtra. With SOPs in place, malls are functioning well in other states and these practices will be implemented here as well to ensure safety of customers & staff," the tweet read.

A recent consumer sentiment survey by the RAI had revealed that more than 60 per cent of the consumers will wait up to 90 days before going out for shopping, keeping in mind the expenditure and safety factors. "This has resulted in slow growth for the retail sector throughout June. The sentiment was reflected in categories like QSR and restaurants (-71 per cent), followed by beauty, wellness, and personal care (-69 per cent) and apparel, clothing, jewellery, watches, and other personal accessories (-67 per cent)," said the statement.

With Unlock 2.0 on the cards in the next few days and several sectors opening again, retail can hope for a revival of consumption and signs of recovery at least in the second quarter of the year, added RAI.

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