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Major Consultation for the Island’s Retail Sector Announced 15 August 2008

The views of the Island’s retail sector, the wider business community, local authorities, the general public and Tynwald Members are being sought on the findings of a major study of retailing in the Isle of Man which has been published by the Department of Trade & Industry, on behalf of the Economic Development Committee (EDC) of the Council of Ministers. The intent is to find ways to help the Isle of Man to enjoy a wide range of retail services, which play a key role in ensuring our towns have a sustainable, successful future.

Roger Tym & Partners (RTP), one of the leading retail consultancies in the UK, was commissioned last year to conduct the most comprehensive study of its kind into the Isle of Man’s retail sector, focusing in particular on:
• the nature and extent of the problems facing retailing on the Isle of Man;
• the future for Isle of Man retailing in the light of trends in internet shopping, mail order and retail centre developments in the UK;
• options for the future development of retailing centres across the Isle of Man;
• policies and incentives for retailing development and investment;
• the extent to which proposed economic initiatives across the Isle of Man would benefit retailing in different retail locations.
Fieldwork, including surveys of household expenditure patterns and retail floorspace projections, took place throughout 2007 and the results of this intensive exercise were presented to EDC earlier this year in the form of a final report from RTP. It is this document, together with a detailed response from Government officers to the RTP recommendations, that the Department of Trade & Industry is now releasing for consultation.

Chief Minister Hon Tony Brown MHK, who chairs EDC, observed: “This consultation should be of interest to all Isle of Man residents. It will help to define Government policy in relation to the retail sector, which in turn will have a major influence on the future appearance of towns and villages all around the Island. I would urge people to take advantage of this opportunity to have their say in the future of retailing in the Isle of Man.”

Minister for Trade & Industry Hon David Cretney MHK said: “I am confident that this consultation will generate a strong response from the business community, the local authorities, Tynwald Members and the public at large as the future of retailing affects everyone in the Island. Roger Tym & Partners have produced many thought-provoking recommendations on how the sector can be taken forward, many of them embracing other important initiatives such as those concerning the regeneration of our town centres. I look forward to receiving the views of a wide selection of interested parties on this important piece of work.”

Copies of the IOM Retail Study report and the related action plan from EDC officers are available on the DTI website at http://www.gov.im/dti/retail.xml.

Please submit any consultation comments to Mark.Kelly@gov.im by 13 October 2008.

For further information on this consultation, contact:

Hon. David Cretney MHK, Minister for Trade & Industry
Tel. 01624 682350
Mark Kelly, Deputy Chief Executive, DTI
Tel. 01624 682370

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