02/01/2023

Wales News Online

Local & National News for Wales

Plaid warns of ‘tipping point’ for hospitality sector

NO timetable of phased hospitality sector opening means businesses will face a terrible decision, says Plaid Cymru.

Helen Mary Jones MS, Plaid Cymru Shadow Minister for the Economy, said:

“We asked for assurances of a timescale for reopening the hospitality sector in Wales. Our calls have been ignored. We now face the very real possibility that many in the sector will decide to make redundancies, or worse, be forced to close.

“Let me be clear. We’re not asking for a blanket reopening of every business. Instead, we’re asking for a timeline for when businesses may be able to open. Our request is not unreasonable, given that the hospitality industry in Scotland, Northern Ireland and England have been given such assurances.

“If the science allows, having a controlled opening in licenced establishments – well used to implementing codes of conduct – could be a positive way of preventing the type of anti-social behaviour we’ve seen recently on Welsh beaches.

“Without a timetable for a phased re-opening of the sector, businesses now face a terrible decision – do they keep staff on beyond 1 August – the point at which businesses are expected to contribute towards furlough payments – or do they start to let their employees go? Given that notice periods tend to be one calendar month, businesses must decide before 1 July – four short days away.

“These are real problems, faced by Welsh businesses today, and will impact thousands of the Welsh workforce. The knock on effect to Wales’ hospitality sector will be catastrophic. We have seen for some time that the Welsh economy stands on a cliff edge, and this lack of action from the Welsh Government could prove to be the tipping point.”

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