The Malta Chamber of Commerce has called for further assistance for businesses until many of them are back on their feet.
On Friday, the President of the Malta Chamber of Commerce Perit David Xuereb met with shop owners in Republic Street, Valletta. During the walkabout, Xuereb and the shop owners discussed the challenges and uncertainties the latter were facing after reopening.
At the end of the walkabout, Xuereb addressed the press, where he welcomed all the assistance that had been made available for businesses so far. However, he highlighted that businesses required more assistance as well as clearer information and guidelines in order to adapt more efficiently to the new norms which they are expected to uphold.
On Friday all the remaining retail outlets reopened their doors for customers after the government lifted the rest of the coronavirus restrictive measures. On Monday, the government is expected to unveil an emergency budget aimed at addressing the challenges brought about by the coronavirus pandemic.
Xuereb remarked that this was a very important step towards a brighter and successful future. He noted that based on the feedback which the chamber had received, businesses operating in the retail sector still found a number of difficulties to return to their full operation.
“A number of operators in fashion retail, for example, are opting to keep their dressing rooms closed, as opening them would be unfeasible” Mr Xuereb noted. “This is testament to a serious business sector which is giving priority to hygiene and customer confidence” he said.
“Serious issues with rent also remain, as businesses continued to bare this cost even throughout the slow times of COVID” Perit Xuereb remarked. “Businesses still need help in this regard if they are to be in a fighting position to operate sustainably in the future”.
“These are historic days, but like many times in the past, we still need to stand up to be counted. The future is exciting, and full of opportunity. It may not look like the past we were used to, but it is exciting nevertheless. Let’s all pull together and make a success of the future” Perit Xuereb concluded.
Xuereb was accompanied by the Chair of the Importers Economic Group Mr Marcel K. Mifsud, the Director General of the Malta Chamber Mr Kevin J. Borg and Business Development Manager Mr Stefan Bajada.
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