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Regions High Streets Face Twin Attack From Austerity And Brexit
481 stores shut their doors across the region last year as local shop workers face a twin attack from austerity and Brexit.
As the challenges facing retailers are debated in Westminster, today 6th June, MEP Alex Mayer said:
“Our high streets and town centres are at the heart of our community and are the life-blood of our economy, but the retail sector is being gutted by the Tory Government’s austerity agenda and Brexit woes.”
270,000 retail workers are currently employed across the East of England.
The UK’s decision to leave the EU has had a large impact on the retail sector largely due to the depreciation of the pound and the resulting higher costs for suppliers. This has had a disproportionately high effect on non-food retailers, particularly those that sell expensive items like furniture. Future challenges include possible tariffs and other barriers that may increase prices; changes to the regulations; and any abrupt transition that would increase costs and complexity enormously.
Ms Mayer added “The next Labour government will support retail by investing in skills, introducing a real living wage of £10 and work with unions and management to ensure that jobs are safeguarded.”