// Sunday trading laws to be relaxed in a bid to boost economy
// Trading laws could be suspended for a year
The government is drawing up legislation to enable larger supermarkets to open for more than six hours on Sundays, in a bid to boost the economy.
The Sunday trading laws could be suspended for a year in a move that the government hopes will stimulate the economy.
As concerns around unemployment grow, Downing Street is under pressure to secure jobs and boost business as the UK emerges from lockdown.
- Consumer confidence tumbles to near-recession levels
- Non-essential retailers to reopen from June 15, government says
Boris Johnson, his chief adviser Dominic Cummings, chancellor, Rishi Sunak, and business secretary Alok Sharma, are said to support the measure.
Sunday trading laws were introduced under the Sunday Trading Act 1994, which limits shops with retail space over 280 square metres to a maximum of six hours of trading.
New legislation would enable larger supermarkets to open for more than six hours on Sundays.
However, Labour and Co-operative party councillor in Lewisham, south London, Joe Dromey tweeted:
Scrapping Sunday trading laws will do little to boost the economy, but it will cause a lot of disruption to the lives of low paid retail workers who have kept the country going through this crisis.
And you can bet that it will not be temporary.
This must be blocked. https://t.co/MxfJyMCtxl
— Joe Dromey (@Joe_Dromey) June 6, 2020
David Cameron’s attempt to abolish Sunday trading laws in 2016 failed after 27 Tory MPs rebelled.
Some supermarkets that have local convenience stores unaffected by Sunday trading laws are opposed to reform but others, including Asda and Morrisons, are said to be in favour.