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MBSZ: Sunday closure law would bring layoffs, price hikes

Retail

The support of some Hungarian chains for Sunday closings is not based on facts or considerations of market reality, and the proposed law will lead to layoffs and price hikes, the Association of Hungarian Retail Stores (MBSZ) said in a press release.

CBA, Coop and Reál, the top three food retailers in the Hungarian market in terms of traffic last year, said Tuesday that they support the recently proposed bill to require shops above a certain size to close on Sunday. The three firms said they support the bill because they want their employees to be able to rest on Sundays and added that no one would lose their jobs as a result of the new bill.

The three stores claimed that they are not supporting the law because it gives them an economic advantage, as they only have a few small stores that would be able to stay open on Sunday. 

Their position was rejected today by MBSZ, an association that represents 35 retail stores and 119 hypermarkets operating on a total of 2 million sqm. According to their press release, the law would result in layoffs involving 15,000-20,000 workers. The proposed law would also allow the smaller stores, that could stay open on Sunday to raise prices, MBSZ said.

MBSZ added that GFK statistics reveal that families of three or more, in which at least one person works full time, support Sunday shopping.

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