// The Future of Retail All Party Parliamentary Group is formed to help and support the UK retail industry after the pandemic
// It is now set to arrange meetings & discussions with retailers in time for UK Parliament’s return this month
Parliamentarians from across the political divide have formed a group that aims to look at helping and supporting the struggling retail industry in light of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Future of Retail APPG (All Party Parliamentary Group) was formally established in late July and is an informal cross-party group made up of MPs and Peers.
It will provide a forum for parliamentarians and retail businesses to work together to support the industry, protect jobs and aid recovery during and after the coronavirus crisis.
- Retail employment plunges at fastest rate since financial crisis
- Calls for action mount as retail job cuts tally surpasses 41,000
Conservative MP Matt Vickers, who has a background in retail, has been elected to chair the group.
After recently visiting independent high street businesses with Chancellor Rishi Sunak, Vickers is now arranging meetings and discussions with retailers in time for UK Parliament’s return this month.
The Future of Retail APPG will also make recommendations to the government on how it can support the retail industry over the coming months.
“The coronavirus pandemic has accelerated already worrying trends in the retail industry which have put jobs and livelihoods at risk, including in my own part of the world, where we’ve sadly seen a number of shops prematurely shut for good during the pandemic,” Vickers said.
“I look forward to working with retail businesses and my parliamentary colleagues to ensure these issues are given the appropriate attention they require in Parliament.
“We’ve seen some hugely innovative government support packages for our retailers and we’ll be fighting to ensure this continues as well as pushing for the right solutions on digital tax and the review of business rates.
“Our high streets are the hearts of our communities and we need to stand up for them.”
Some of the organisations the Future of Retail APPG will be working with includes British Retail Consortium and the Federation of Small Business.