1 customer per 10m2 rule applies from Tuesday. Dramatic drop in frequency and loss of sales due to restrictions and home offices feared.
Vienna (OTS) – Halloween and the next four weeks will be scary in the truest sense of the word for the Austrian economy. The second lockdown, including nightly exit restrictions between 8:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m., announced today by the federal government, exacerbates the dramatic situation of many domestic companies. The Covid-19 Protective Measures Ordinance is to come into force on Tuesday at 12:00 a.m. and in any case apply until November 30th.
Food wholesalers massively affected by gastro closure
While restaurants as well as baths, cinemas, theaters, betting offices, museums, zoos and other leisure facilities are completely closed to guests, retailers (where no Covid infection has been detected to date) may still be open – but under stricter hygiene Requirements. For example, the restriction will again apply that 10 m² per customer must be available in the shop.
All businesses closed in November will be compensated 80% of the previous year’s turnover. The problem:
Domestic dealers are not covered by this compensation scheme, although they will also have to cope with a dramatic drop in sales in the next four weeks. This applies in particular to the food wholesaling and the entire stationary retail sector, above all to the clothing, shoes, watches and jewelry sectors.
The entire stationary trade has to accept a loss of frequency and turnover
“If we have learned one thing from the first lockdown in March, it is that the trade needs the catering trade. The entry bans in the catering trade therefore inevitably lead to a decline in frequency and sales in the entire stationary trade”, explains Rainer Will, Managing Director of the trade association.
The additional restrictions keep the walk-in customers away from the shops – for some industries this is like a quasi-lockdown. The trend is fueled by the fact that there is also less demand, since no cultural or leisure activities can take place. “If, for example, there are no balls, no more prom dresses, no new shoes and no accessories are needed. The cocooning trend already led to a massive decline in the clothing sector in spring,” says Will.
Trade needs maximum compensation for lockdown time! It’s about existences.
Against this background, the trade association is also demanding maximum compensation for the lockdown time for affected dealers who will probably have to cope with sales losses of up to 100 percent in November.
“In view of the exponentially increasing numbers of infections, retailers fully understand the new Covid measures. Now, however, it also needs an understanding that retailers – even if they are allowed to remain open – will need economic aid and compensation in certain sectors to the same extent as those industries who are affected by an entry ban. We must not forget the collateral effects of the lockdown, “explains trade spokesman Rainer Will. “The recent lockdown will leave deep marks in retail. Many companies have invested long-term in their cost of goods. It is about economic livelihoods.”
Companies need compensation for losses and other measures to secure liquidity such as a bite of bread
In view of the expected slump in sales, it is now crucial to be able to use the full spectrum of economic aid, such as fixed cost subsidies, disaster relief and loss compensation. The latter is an essential foundation for maintaining a company in the medium term. Accordingly, companies with up to 50 employees can get up to 90 percent of their losses reimbursed, provided they lose at least 30 percent of their sales compared to the same period in the previous year. For larger companies, it should be up to 70 percent. The EU Commission has already paved the way for this. Measures to secure liquidity are now more important than ever.