Tánaiste Leo Varadkar called a meeting of business leaders to get feedback on the Taoiseach’s Thursday 29/4 announcement about the reopening. RGDATA Director General Tara Buckley took part in the 7pm conference call and warned businesses preparing to reopen to be ready to deal with aggressive anti-maskers and Covid deniers.
Buckley also raised Minimum Unit Pricing of Alcohol and told the Tánaiste, Minister for Retail Damien English and Minister Robert Troy that RGDATA supported MUP but border country retailers were extremely concerned about the plan for Ireland to go it alone.
“Retailers in border counties, and further down the country, have experience on this. Every time there is a significant price differential - Irish shoppers will go North in their droves to purchase cheap alcohol. While they are there they will buy all their other shopping. Not just food and personal care but clothes, shoes, electrical goods, jewellery - everything. This will be devastating for shops in September when they have just got back up and running and want to try and make up for all the lost time.” Buckley urged them to represent the retail sector and concentrate their efforts on getting Northern Ireland to introduce MUP at the same time.