A welcome boost for business with eased Covid restrictions in NSW
Thursday 17 February 2022
Australian Retailers Association CEO Paul Zahra has welcomed the easing health protocols in NSW, including the removal of QR codes for retail, density limits and masks in indoor settings, as an important step in our pandemic recovery.
“These are sensible measures that reduce the burden on business and allows them to trade at their full potential after several months of stop-start restrictions. It’s important that health protocols are eased when it’s safe to do so and we thank the NSW Government for the adjustments they’ve made,” Mr Zahra said.
“QR codes have served an important purpose throughout the pandemic – but for retail, they’re passed their use by date.
“The removal of the indoor mask mandate will also ensure we can get more people back into the office – and into the Sydney CBD in particular, which is continuing to struggle with reduced levels of foot traffic. Sydney’s office occupancy rate is languishing at 7% and that needs an urgent turnaround.
“We’ve been working closely with the NSW Government on how we can breathe new life into the Sydney CBD and look forward to continuing those discussions on accelerating our post-Covid recovery.
“The international border reopens next week to tourists and business travellers, but this isn’t a silver bullet solution as it will take years for tourism levels to get anywhere near pre-pandemic levels.
“The pandemic has fundamentally changed the way our city’s function and we need to look at bold ideas to inject them with new life. It’s important there’s a continued collaborative approach between government, business and industry to ensure our CBDs return to the thriving hubs they once were.”
About us: The Australian Retailers Association (ARA) is the oldest, largest and most diverse national retail body, representing a $360bn sector which employs 1.3 million Australians and is the largest private sector employer in the country. As Australia’s peak retail body, representing more than 100,000 retail shop fronts and online stores, the ARA informs, advocates, educates, protects and unifies our independent, national and international retail community. To learn more about ARA’s exclusive member benefits and more, visit retail.org.au