RETAIL MARKET OUTLOOK:
The outlook for the retail sector is generally stable, albeitthere are some concerns over the potential impact of increased state intervention in recent months.
A new law was passed in December, which forces non-family owned retail stores that are larger than 200 sq m GLA to shut on Sundays, which may dampen investors appetite and cause some international occupiers to re-consider expansion plans in the country. This is in addition to an already approved levy of up to 6% on retail activities and a rule that will revoke a trading license if there are two consecutive years of trading losses.
Most retailers believe that the measures of Sunday trading ban will not last –the ICSC is currently preparing for the public voting against the regulation. Main arguments include the treat of significant staff redundancies and lower revenues through VAT.Thiswill definitely be a hot issue in the coming months and will emerge to cause uncertainty on the market. We are continuously talking to market players and will keep you posted.