By Daniel Hunter

Chambers Ireland has called on Government to implement a range of measures to support job creation and retention in the retail sector.

The call comes following a presentation to the Interdepartmental Group on Retail in the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation.

"With retailers forming the heart of our town centres across the country, the Government must do everything it can to assist this sector and restore life to the country's high streets," Ian Talbot, Chambers Ireland Chief Executive, said.

"A key issue facing retailers in town centres is competition from out-of-town shopping centres and the free parking they provide. The introduction of a 'parking window' where the first two hours are free would be of significant benefit to retailers in town centres. A reduction in subsequent parking costs would complement this further encourage consumers to shop in their town centre.

"Similarly, the introduction of a rates reduction for companies located within town and city centres, which provide much needed employment and contribute to the quality of life in these areas, would have a considerable impact on retailers.

"Providing support for small businesses through these measures can be the difference between these businesses remaining viable and ceasing to trade."

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