RGDATA Director General Tara Buckley highlighted the key issues impacting on independent convenience/grocery retailers in an online meeting with Minister for Retail Damien English on Thursday 4 September. “We had a full and frank discussion about the ongoing challenges being posed by Covid-19; mandatory face masks; the need for the new Minister to take a strong line with the banks on charges imposed on retailers and their customers with regard to cash and contactless payments; what interventions are required to reduce the cost of shop insurance and the need for investment in new structures and strategies to revitalise the retail core of Ireland’s towns and villages,” said Buckley.
“We also discussed the Online Retail Scheme; the challenges of a no deal Brexit and the November 12 deadline for Structural Separation”. RGDATA will provide follow up information to the Minister on what is required in Budget 2021 to fund Town Centre Repurposing and regeneration and the roll out of the new Town Centre First Policy and implementation programmes. “The Minister said he was aware that RGDATA had considerable experience in this area following on from our work with the Heritage Council on the Collaborative Town Centre Health Check Programme” and he looked forward to seeing our views on how the policy and programmes should be funded and rolled out.