By Patrick Avenell
West Australian consumers had their first taste of ‘luxury’ Sunday shopping yesterday, with the state’s Premier, Colin Barnett, officially opening up Australia’s largest state to full weekend trading.
Retravision CEO Paul Holt said this was a great move for the state, which is home to a large number of Retravision stores and the head office.
“There were literally thousands of shoppers out yesterday and our stores had a really good day, as did the vast majority of retailers that opened their doors,” Holt told Current.com.au. “There is no doubt in my mind that the Perth public see Sunday trading as an absolute necessity and, if yesterday was anything to go by, voted with their feet (and their wallets) and will continue to do so.”
Before yesterday, only certain stores with exemptions were allowed to open on Sunday, with most appliance and consumer electronics chains failing to qualify.
Sunday trading has existed in all states outside Western Australia since South Australia amended its retail legislation in 2003. In all other states, retail had been largely deregulated, with restrictions only applying to certain public holidays, most notably ANZAC Day and Easter.
In a press conference originally reported by Fairfax newspapers, Premier Barnett expressed his happiness at this leap forward.
"There is no doubt that West Australians are voting with their feet," Barnett said. "And very quickly Sunday shopping will become the main shopping day of the week, if not already.
"You will find that people will do a lot of their shopping on Sunday."
"Particularly in areas like fashion or electrical items and furniture, that’s an opportunity to take your time and look at separate outlets, for husbands and wives to go out together," Mr Barnett said.