The Government’s decision to extend Alert Level 3 until midnight Sunday August 30 has dealt hospitality yet another blow says the Restaurant Association of New Zealand.
“We were looking for the quickest possible return to Alert Level 1 trading, but we had expected the government might extend the level 3 period within Auckland until Friday August 28. The closure for another full weekend, which are key trading days for hospitality is yet another blow,” said Marisa Bidois CEO of the Restaurant Association.
“Keeping the rest of the country at level 2, also seems an unnecessary measure given where the current clusters are. We are currently looking at a closure rate of between 10 and 12 percent of all hospitality businesses as a result of these restrictions.
“Our businesses are crying out for help and yet we’re still being denied targeted support. We’ve faced ongoing restrictions to trading and reduced visitor numbers from the ongoing closure of the border.
“The majority of our industry is made up of small owner operator businesses that cannot sustain these ongoing closures and restrictions.
“Quite simply, there will be at least 10 per cent of our industry closed which translates to around 13,000 jobs arising if these restrictions continue.”
The Restaurant Association launched a nationwide petition calling on the government to adopt a scheme similar to the UK’s “Eat Out to Help Out” initiative, to assist the battling hospitality industry which has been devastated by the coronavirus pandemic.
The petition, which called on the House of Representatives to urge the Government to provide targeted support for the hospitality industry, through a home-grown version of the initiative that the Association has dubbed “Dine out to Help out”.
The petition with 3500 signatures, garnered in just five days was presented to Rt Hon Chris Faafoi by Restaurant Association President Mike Egan and Vice President Steve Logan on the steps of parliament along with a takeaway lunch from Monsoon Poon.