Sainsbury’s chief executive Justing King has hit out at Government plans to permanently extend Sunday trading saying that it would not be the “magic answer” to economic regeneration.
King said in an open letter to the Sunday Telegraph yesterday (19 August) that plans to permanently extend Sunday trading laws “need reflection”.
He says there is “great merit” in keeping Sunday special and allowing as many families as possible to spend time together at the weekends.
The supermarket boss adds that Sainsbury’s will not be calling for a change in the law to permanently allow longer trading on Sundays, and those that do so will need to prove the a “strong economic case” to justify doing so.
Despite its position as an official sponsor of the Paralympic Games, Sainsbury’s has only extended hours at 30 of its 1,000 UK stores.
Laws have been relaxed to allow retailers to open longer during a seven week period this summer to take advantage of the increased footfall expected throughout the Olympic and Paralympic Games. Ministers have indicated that the change could be made permanent despite assurances that the temporary change would not set a precedent.
The move was also criticised by the Association of Convenience Stores, the Union of Shop Distributive and Allied Workers and the Bishop of Oxford in a separate letter to the same paper.