Report: Sunday closure means loss of 2,400 jobs

Government

In April, the first full month following the introduction of the Sunday closure law, approximately 2,400 fewer employees worked in the retail sector in full-time work, Hungarian commercial HírTV reported late Friday.

Zsolt Semjén, Hungary’s Deputy Prime Minister and leader of Christian Democratic Party that created the law, insisted on HírTV: “It has been proven that Sunday closures did not lead to lower traffic and nobody was made redundant, what is more, due to growing traffic more people are being employed in the retail sector.”

Passed late last year, and effective as of March 15, the law dictates that retailers must close on Sundays, unless the stores are smaller than 400 sqms and are being operated by owners.

Critics have said that the law hurts foreign hypermarkets and favors local supermarket chains, such as CBA, which has a franchise ownership structure that technically means each shop is individually owned. The head of CBA is known to be a major contributor to the ruling Fidesz party.

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