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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    JOINT STATEMENT
    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk
    Treasurer and Minister for Trade and Investment
    The Honourable Curtis Pitt
    Minister for Employment and Industrial Relations, Minister for Racing and Minister for Multicultural Affairs
    The Honourable Grace Grace

    Retail trading hours overhaul a win for jobs, consumers and workers

    JOINT STATEMENT

    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk

    Treasurer and Minister for Trade and Investment
    The Honourable Curtis Pitt

    Minister for Employment and Industrial Relations, Minister for Racing and Minister for Multicultural Affairs
    The Honourable Grace Grace

    Tuesday, February 14, 2017

    Retail trading hours overhaul a win for jobs, consumers and workers

    The Palaszczuk Government has announced the overhaul of Queensland’s retail trading hours to create jobs, end confusion and increase choice for consumers, and protect workers.

    Responding to the 13 recommendations of the trading hours’ review, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the current trading hours were restrictive, confusing and imposed extra costs on businesses, employees and consumers.

    “The Government will make wide-ranging reforms to trading hours in Queensland to create more jobs,” she said.

    “For 20 years, Queensland Governments have known our trading hours were draconian and a handbrake on jobs. They refused to act. My Government will act.”

    “My Government can make these positive changes for Queenslanders, because my Government can work with business, we can work with unions and employees and we work in the best interests of Queensland.”

    The retail trade industry in Queensland employs 255,000 Queenslanders or 11% of all jobs across the State, paying $9.9 billion in wages and accounting for $76 billion in sales.

    Independent studies on the relaxation of trading hours have projected an economic benefit to Queensland ranging from $200 million (Queensland Competition Authority, 2013) and $253 million (Henry Ergas, 2014).

    The National Retailers’ Association estimated substantial deregulation would deliver a $440 million boost to Queensland’s economy and add the equivalent of 3109 full-time jobs.

    The Premier said the current regulation of trading hours is confusing for consumers and complex for retailers.

    “Under the current trading hour regulations, you can buy a boat in Queensland on a Sunday, but not a car or a caravan,” she said.

     “There are 99 different trading hours’ provisions. For Sunday alone, there are 30 different trading zones across Queensland.”

    “Once an independent retail shop has more than 20 employees on the shop floor, they fall into the non-exempt shop category. This acts as a brake on employment.”

    The Premier said the key reforms, to be introduced via legislation, include:

    • Sunday and public holiday trading to be standardised across Queensland, with those towns that currently do not have Sunday trading able to opt in through an application to the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission;
    • Easter Sunday to be an open trading day across the State (for those that have Sunday trading)
    • Exempt shops that can trade without restriction to be extended to include butcher shops, special exhibitions and trade shows
    • Provision for special trading hours’ applications for international events such as the Commonwealth Games
    • Businesses selling motor vehicles or caravans are to be the same as for all other non-exempt shops in Queensland, permitting them to trade on Sundays.
    • All hardware stores can open on Sundays from 6am;
    • All non-exempt shops must be closed on Good Friday, ANZAC Day, Labour Day and Christmas Day.

     To facilitate the change, there will be a five-year moratorium on further trading hours’ applications to amend the allowable trading hours for non-exempt shops with a commitment to further review prior to the end of the moratorium period.

     Treasurer Curtis Pitt said the changes to trading hours were a significant microeconomic reform that the LNP left on the shelf during their time in office.

     “The benefits of these reforms will be far-reaching — retailers, consumers, retail industry workers, and local, regional, and state economies will all benefit from our reforms,” he said.

     “The more flexible, standardised, and arrangements will generate significant economic benefits by cutting the regulatory burden, lifting competition and improving outcomes for consumers.

     “The retail sector is the second-largest employer in the state and reform of trading hours also benefit our tourism and hospitality industries.

     “It has taken the Palaszczuk Government to deliver these benefits while Tim Nicholls and the LNP never lifted a finger.”

     Industrial Relations Minister Grace Grace said a massive 99 trading hour provisions, contained in over 40 pages of orders would be replaced by just six.

     ”These changes simplify and bring uniformity to trading hours’ arrangements, allowing retailers to set their hours to best service their customers’ needs,” she said.

    “This is a huge reduction in red tape that will mean more jobs for Queenslanders, a stronger economy, and healthier retail competition – which means lower prices for customers.

    “Importantly, no-one will be made to work any of the additional hours allowed by the changes unless they have voluntarily agreed to do so.

    “This is a victory for common sense, jobs and the economy.”

    The Inquiry, led by former Parliamentary Speaker John Mickel, reported that an overhaul of trading hours would:

    • reduce direct compliance costs;
    • increase operational efficiency or productivity
    • increase retail sales
    • increase retail competition leading to lower prices for consumers.

    Link to the report https://www.treasury.qld.gov.au/fair-safe-work/industrial-relations-policy-regulation/trading-hours-review/documents/trading-hours-review-final-report.pdf

    Media contact:

    Kirby Anderson (Premier’s office) 0417 263 791

    Lindsay Marshall (Treasurer’s office) 0447 316 432

    Martin Philip (Minister Grace’s office) 0427 919 548

     

    Trading hours’ reforms

     Recommendation 1

    All non-exempt shops in the south-east Queensland area may open:

    • 7am – 9pm Monday to Saturday; and
    • 9am – 6pm Sundays and most public holidays.

    Adopted in full.

     

    Recommendation 2

    All non-exempt shops in areas outside south-east Queensland may open:

    • 7am – 9pm Monday to Friday;
    • 7am – 6pm Saturday; and
    • 9am – 6pm Sundays and most public holidays.

     Adopted subject to:

    Cabinet has decided that trading hours for Sunday and public holidays in regional Queensland not be extended to those areas that currently do not have Sunday and public holiday trading. Industrial organisations and any other organisation including local governments may make application to the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission to opt-in to those provisions.

    Most major regional towns along the coast are covered by seven day trading hours’ orders and already have Sunday trading.

    The 23 major towns without Sunday/public holiday trading are Mt Isa, Warwick, Goondiwindi, Chinchilla, Kingaroy, Stanthorpe, Roma, Childers, Blackwater, Bowen, Ayr, Charters Towers, Proserpine, Mission Beach, Cloncurry, Weipa, Nanango, Oakey, Home Hill, Pittsworth, Blackwater, Charleville, and Longreach.

     

    Recommendation 3

    In special and tourist areas (i.e. the following areas as currently defined in the trading hours’ orders - New Farm, Hamilton North Shore, supermarkets in Gold Coast Coastal Tourist Area and Port Douglas, Great Barrier Reef Wonderland Tourist Complex) non-exempt shops may open:

    • 6am – 10pm Monday to Friday;
    • 7am – 10pm Saturday; and
    • 7am – 9pm Sunday and most public holidays.

     Adopted in full.

     

     Recommendation 4

     In all areas of the State hardware and builders’ material supply non-exempt shops (as currently defined in the trading hours’ orders) may open from 6am Monday to Sunday and most public holidays with a closing time the same as other non-exempt shops in their area.

     Adopted in full.

     

    Recommendation 5

    The public holidays on which all non-exempt shops must be closed (closed days) are to be the same in all areas of Queensland. These are Good Friday, ANZAC Day, Labour Day and Christmas Day.

    Adopted in full.

     

    Recommendation 6

    Extended trading will apply in the period prior to Christmas Day by allowing non-exempt shops in all areas of the state to open:

    • 8am - 6pm on the three Sundays prior to 18 December each year, and
    • until midnight Monday-Sunday in the period from 18-23 December.

    All non-exempt shops to be closed from 6pm on 24 December.

    The 24-hour shopping arrangements currently in place for Westfield Chermside and Garden City will continue.

    Adopted in full.

     

    Recommendation 7          

    The trading hours for non-exempt shops selling motor vehicles or caravans are to be the same as for all other non-exempt shops in Queensland.

    Adopted in full.

     

    Recommendation 8

    Legislative protections are to be provided to workers which will ensure that agreement to work on any of the new extended hours is to be voluntary.

    Adopted in full.

     

    Recommendation 9

    A five-year moratorium on further trading hours’ applications to amend the allowable trading hours for non-exempt shops with a commitment to further review prior to the end of the moratorium period.

    Adopted in full.

     

    Recommendation 10

    The following shops are to be included in the list of exempt shops (meaning they can trade without any restrictions):

    • special exhibitions, trade shows;
    • shops in international airports, cruise terminals, casinos, tourist resorts on offshore islands;
    • butcher shops;
    • shops operating within a designated area around and during international special events (e.g. Commonwealth Games) and for local festivals. An application for special event or local festival status and the designated area will be made to the QIRC for determination; and
    • shops in the Mossman and Port Douglas Tourist area to be exempt for a trial period of five years.

     Adopted in full.

     

    Recommendation 11

    The categories of independent retail and exempt shops are to be amalgamated into a single category of exempt shop. Current trading hours’ restrictions for independent retail shops on Good Friday, Christmas Day, and to 1pm on ANZAC Day are to remain (other than those selling groceries and fresh food).

    Adopted in full.

     

    Recommendation 12

    The number of persons that may be engaged at an independent retail shop or shops at any one time is to be increased from 20 to 30 in any one shop, and where a number of related retail shops are operated, increased from 60 to 100 overall.

    Adopted in full.

     

    Recommendation 13

    The QIRC will continue to adjudicate allowable trading hours outside the legislated spread of hours for non-exempt shops. However, this power is suspended during the period of the proposed moratorium.

    Adopted in full.