Turning South Perth into a tourist precinct will not lead to a rush of after-hours shopping, South Perth MLA John McGrath said yesterday.
“It might be nice to have “tourist precinct” alongside our city’s name but apart from allowing the two Coles stores to open until 9pm on weeknights and also on Sundays, it will do little else.
“What is being lost in the whole trading hours debate is that all small businesses can already trade 24 hours a day, seven days a week if they want to.
“All those specialty shops in Mends Street and Angelo Street can stay open as late as they like. But they don’t because there is not the demand.
“The Liberal Party is a free enterprise party but we also support small business.
“Some working people in the electorate, particularly young ones, are telling me that they would like the bigger stores to remain open for an extra hour or two on weeknights to allow them more time to get to the shop.
“Others say they have plenty of time to shop under the existing regime.
“However, the biggest push has come from people who want to be able to buy a TV, fridge or washing machine on a Sunday. Those are the things people like to shop for as a family, and many of them simply don’t have time to do that during the week.
“My personal view is that 8pm would be a good compromise for week night shopping and that the bigger shops should be allowed to trade between 11am and 5pm on Sundays.
“That would allow the small independent grocers to be still be able to compete.”