During the 3rd WUWM retail conference in Dublin attendants discussed local and international regulations concerning retail markets. Experts specifically expressed their concern with the minor consultation and involvement of relevant market industry organizations in the establishment of the European Service Directive. National and regional legislation that has been shaped throughout the years with local stakeholder involvement might be disregarded. Furthermore, the conference covered the crucial role retail markets have in providing healthy and accessible produce, and the prospects of retail and street markets in the coming years.
The key outcomes of this meeting are:
- The growing collection of European data* put in evidence the vital role retail markets play in supporting the goals of cities and local governments in feeding healthy and accessible food to the European population. Data shows that retail markets are keys actors to ensure quality, fresh, healthy food, affordable, and readily accessible to the public worldwide. Retail markets also ensure an alternative commercial channel for citizens and for farmers – one that supports price transparency, increased variety and diversity of product, and ensures a competitive playing field is established for businesses of all-sizes to compete.
- Local governments play a central role in the development and planification of retail/street markets throughout Europe – public or private. Therefore, city alliances, like the Union of Cities & Local Government (UCLG – https://www.uclg.org/en/organisation/about),should place “retail markets” in urban planning discussions back on the international agenda.
- While welcoming EU legislation that assists in cross-border trading, thus bringing market benefits to the wider community, effective implementation requires that legislation be subject to prior consultation with the correct bodies. The recent European Services Directive has potentially significant impacts on both traders and market operators, but there is a lack of clarity and guidance in the requirements of this Directive. The European Services Directive was implemented in 2009 and established to realize the full potential of services markets in Europe by removing legal and administrative barriers to trade.The Directive means that national rules restricting the right of establishment and the freedom to provide services falling under the Directive must be non-discriminatory, proportionate and justified by public interest objectives. To ensure that all new regulatory measures imposed by EU countries fulfil these conditions and to prevent new barriers, the Services Directive introduced a procedure whereby EU countries shall notify the Commission of new or changed regulatory measures affecting services. This should allow for an assessment of whether such measures are justified and proportionate. WUWM urges the European Commission and member states to urgently review arrangements relating to this Directive and to ensure that the relevant market industry organizations are recognized and given the opportunity to be fully involved and consulted.
* Steve Burt, 2010, Retailing in Europe: 20 Years On, https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09593960903497773; Herman J. Kok, 2007, Restructuring Retail Property Markets in Central Europe: Impacts on Urban Space, https://link.springer.com/10.1007/s10901-006-9068-z; Hayley Myers and Nicholas Alexander, 2007, The Role of Retail Internationalisation in the Establishment of a European Retail Structure, https://www.researchgate.net/publication/235303122_The_role_of_retail_internationalisation_in_the_establishment_of_a_European_retail_structure
Main issues discussed:
- The role of local government in establishing and regulating retail markets: what can Ireland learn from the rest of Europe
- John Gormley – Minister of Environment, Heritage, & Local Government, Ireland
- Putting retail markets back on the political agenda – the UK story: How did the UK markets industry succeed in creating a national political framework for the market sector? Market Rights and the EU Services Directive
- Graham Wilson – General Secretary, National Association of British Market Authorities (NABMA), UK
- Joe Harrison – CEO, National Market Traders Federation (NMTF), UK
- Markets, traders and municipalities
- Alan Ottey, Town Centre Manager, Nuneaton & Bedworth Borough Council
- Jean-Paul Auguste, Président, Groupe Geraud
- Maarten de Graaf, Policy Advisor, Dutch Retail Board (HBD)
- Round table debate: Beyond 2010: markets and community
- Jean-Paul Auguste, President, Groupe Geraud, France
- Martin Blackwell, Development Director, ATCM, UK
- James Walsh, Market Trader/Organiser, Ireland
- Michael Weinreich, BSM, Germany
- Jan Lloyd, CEO, Covent Garden Market Authority (CGMA), UK
WUWM Declaration 25 June 2010 (unanimous agreement of):
- We note the growing collection of European data that evidences the vital role retail markets play in supporting the goals of cities and local governments. Retail markets are clear keys to ensuring quality, fresh, healthy food is available, affordable, and readily accessible to the public. Retail markets also ensure an alternative retail channel exists – one that supports price transparency, increased variety and diversity of product, and ensures a competitive playing field is established for all sized businesses to compete.
- Despite providing such benefits, we note that European retail markets do not always benefit from the most suitable locations, nor sufficient urban planning recognition or funding. We therefore use this occasion to strongly encourage local governments throughout Europe to provide municipal retail market operators – public or private, with the necessary support to continue their provision of long-term sustainable solutions to several of the social and economic problems existing in our communities today; and we urge such organizations as the Union of Cities & Local Government (UCLG) to place public market discussions back on the international agenda.
- We note in this year of continuing global economic challenge that retail market operators and traders have not only demonstrated their resilience, but also their immense benefit in support of local economies and communities everywhere. However, municipal retail markets cannot function optimally without promotional/marketing funds, nor can they operate competitively without effectively funded management able to provide for basic needs such as good lighting, sufficient parking, as well as safe and hygienic amenities.
- While welcoming EU legislation that assists in cross-border trading, thus bringing market benefits to the wider community, effective implementation requires that legislation be subject to prior consultation with the correct bodies. The recent European Services Directive has potentially significant impacts on both traders and market operators but there is a lack of clarity and guidance in the requirements of this Directive. WUWM urges the European Commission and member states to urgently review arrangements relating to this Directive and to ensure that the relevant market industry organizations are recognized and given the opportunity to be fully involved and consulted.