The Australian Retailers Association (ARA) today welcomed the Queensland Government’s announcement to extend the exemption on delivery curfews for supermarkets and essential businesses until 31 October 2020.
This extension follows the Queensland Government’s earlier decision in March to provide supermarkets and essential businesses with greater flexibility to meet additional loading requirements and the ability to restock shelves 24 hours a day.
ARA CEO, Paul Zahra, said the announcement will support the economic recovery of retailers in Queensland and help keep shelves stocked for customers.
“The ARA commends the Queensland Government on this decision, which will support a consistent flow of supplies to stores as they serve the local community during the recovery period.”
“Whilst the panic buying behaviour we saw in March has settled, it remains important that supermarkets and other essential businesses have the flexibility they need to restore normality to their supply chains and enable stock to be replenished efficiently.”
“The increase in online retailing and home deliveries during COVID-19 is likely to remain after the pandemic ends. It is critical that supermarkets and other essential businesses can continue to operate with greater flexibility to meet this shift in customer demand and expectations.
“Being able to deliver stock outside of peak hours will also help reduce congestion on Queensland roads, particularly as schools and businesses begin to return to normal operations,” said Mr Zahra.
Mr Zahra also said that while the temporary measures are helping businesses get back on track, the current curfew exemptions prove that a more permanent solution can work and operate in line with community expectations.
“We see there is a real opportunity here to raise productivity, improve availability for customers, and reduce congestion on our roads. We encourage all state and territory governments across Australia to establish permanent flexibility into laws which govern curfews on overnight deliveries,” he said.