Dutch may ban out-of-season sales to save high street shops

Photo: Depositphotos.com
Photo: Depositphotos.com

A majority of MPs back a ban on retail sales until July 1 in an effort to protect small shops which are suffering because of the coronavirus crisis.

Sales were banned in the Netherlands up to 1984, apart from in January and July, and ministers are looking into bringing back temporary legislation while the crisis continues.

The legislation would cover online and physical non-food stores and would, ministers say, protect small shops against their bigger competitors forcing down prices permanently.

Normal price

‘Everything which can be done to protect the high street is a good idea,’ Christian Democrat MP Mustafa Amhaouch said. ‘Then shops can sell their current stocks at a normal price.’

‘We don’t want Amazon to compete the local bookshop out of the market,’ said D66 MP Kees Verhoeven. The US online retail giant has recently launched in the Netherlands.

Some 6,300 small shopkeepers have also signed a petition urging the government to take action.

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