17:00 Monday 5th of February 2018
The EU Parliament wants to make online shopping more straightforward.
Ever log onto a department store’s UK website and get re-directed to its Irish or EU site?
The new rules, which will be debated in Europe this week, aim to prevent this happening – meaning shoppers in counties like Donegal could save money.
It is believed that a vote will be held tomorrow and the new rules are expected to be introduced in time for Christmas.
Meanwhile, the retail sector is currently undergoing one of the biggest structural changes in its history, according to a new report from Ibec group’s Retail Ireland.
The group warns in its latest Retail Monitor, which was published today, that there is a “growing disconnect between increasing consumer disposable income and the unspectacular performance of a range of retail categories over the crucial Christmas trading period”.
Retail Ireland director Thomas Burke said: “Last year, 2017, was notable for a rapid increase in online shopping by Irish consumers. Christmas 2017 will show record online sales with the Irish consumer now more comfortable than ever shopping in the virtual world.
“This lays the challenge squarely at the door of the traditional Irish retail sector.
“We know that the majority of online trade leaves the State on a daily basis, with some putting an estimate of 70 per cent of all digital purchases transacted on websites based outside of Ireland.
“For some retail categories, we have reached a critical point, where failure to act in the short-term will lead to closures and the gradual disappearance of certain retail formats from our high street.
“A clear digital strategy will be crucial in ensuring the future of such businesses who must embrace the challenge at all levels of the organisation.”[“Source-donegalnow”]