Irish Retail Sales Up 3.2% In December
The total value of Irish retail sales rose by 3.2% in December 2019, compared with the same month the previous year, according to Retail Ireland, the group that represents the Irish retail sector.
Volume sales were up 5.4% for the period.
On a month-to-month basis, value sales rose by 2.9%, while volume sales were up 2.7%.
“Retailers had a broadly positive Christmas with sustained growth across most of the major categories," commented Retail Ireland director Arnold Dillon. "The volume of sales is growing significantly faster than the value of retail sales, which means consumers are getting more for their money."
Dillon added that "intense competition" in the market is keeping prices low, which, while good for the consumer, makes for tougher trading conditions.
With an Irish general election taking place on 8 February, he said that in order to "safeguard jobs in the sector, the next government must tackle key factors driving up retail costs, including rising commercial rates and insurance premiums".
Retail Ireland added that while the UK is set to leave the European Union this week, there remains much to do to ensure that an open trading relationship between Ireland and the UK remains in place in the future.
"There is the very real prospect of significant trade barriers between Britain and Ireland from January 2021 and retail supply chains are particularly exposed," Dillon said.
"An ambitious EU-UK trade deal, that seeks to avoid any trade disruption, must be the aim. At the same time, we must plan for all eventualities. Significant public investment will be needed to improve trade and customs infrastructure and help companies adjust if we face a hard Brexit at year end.”
© 2020 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine