All non-essential goods retailers will be able to open for business from this Friday, except for those in shopping centres.
The move was announced by Minister for the Economy Diane Dodds following a meeting of the Northern Ireland Executive today.
Mrs Dodds said the decision was subject to there being ‘no increase’ in the virus’ spread by Thursday.
“I am very pleased to be able to confirm that all non-essential goods retailers in Northern Ireland can re-open from Friday 12 June, subject to them adhering to all the necessary safety measures and no increase in the spread of the virus,” she said.
“The pandemic has had a devastating impact on the local economy. The recovery has already begun and it is time now for the pace to accelerate.
“The safety of staff and customers is of course paramount. All retailers must be able to implement measures to minimise the risk to their staff and to the people who visit their stores.
“We will be co-existing with this virus for some time to come so it is vital that we continue to adhere to guidance to work and live safely.
“The re-opening of our local shopping sector is a significant step forward in the Executive’s pathway to recovery. This is a major step forward today, but there is more work to do.”
A spokesperson for Magherafelt Chamber of Commerce welcomed the return for retail.
"The Magherafelt Chamber of Commerce welcomes the decision by the NI Executive to reopen all non essential goods retailers in Northern Ireland from Friday 12th June.
"Shopping local has never been so important and we urge the public to support our retailers and businesses in Magherafelt. With their help and support our resilient businesses will get through this and our town will be thriving again."
The Minister said the Executive would meet later in the week to discuss when shopping centres may reopen.
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