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Retail business fearful of carbon tax

A recent survey has found that 83 per cent of retail businesses expect consumers to spend less as a direct result of the impending tax on carbon dioxide emissions.

The study conducted by the leading retail body Australian Retailers Association involved interviewing 500 retailers in different sectors.

It found that the majority of respondents felt that their businesses - as well as the industry as a whole - could suffer heavy losses.

Over one third said that these losses would most likely result in them having to shed staff to remain profitable.

Tha ARA's executive director Russell Zimmerman said that retailers are worried they won’t be able to pass on any price rises to customers given the historically low levels of consumer sentiment present in the market today.

Mr Zimmerman asserted: "Some have managed to take environmentally-friendly measures that have reduced their energy bills, only to find with the rising costs of utilities they’re now back to where they started in the first place".

Approximately $240 billion is generated by the Australian retail sector for the economy in terms of gross domestic product.

Given the relationship retailers have with commercial real estate, professionals may want to engage in peer discussions of these implications at their local property management conference.

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