Australia’s largest and most diverse retail industry association, the National Retail Association, has affirmed its commitment to working with the New South Wales Government to help introduce new consumer protections for gift cards.
NRA Manager – Industry Policy David Stout said retailers would be keen for further input as the change to a three-year minimum term for store gift cards was implemented.
Mr Stout acknowledged that the NSW Government and Minister for Better Regulation, Matt Kean, had sought the views of the retail sector prior to introducing the legislation.
“We thank Minister Kean and the Government for giving us the opportunity to have input into the legislative process, and for listening to our views,” he said.
“We know that not all retailers will be happy with these reforms, and that for those who operate in multiple states this will add a layer of red tape and complexity to their operations,” Mr Stout said.
“However, we understand the Government’s motivation to protect consumers and ensure that people are able to get a fair return on their investment when they purchase gift cards.
“So the NRA is ready to work with the NSW Government, with our members and with all retailers to ensure these changes are implemented in the smoothest possible way.”
Mr Stout urged the Government to continue its consultations with the retail sector as the changes were implemented, and to ensure it communicated clearly with retailers about their new responsibilities.
“There’s no doubt that this change will cause disruption for some retail businesses. This is particularly true for small businesses who might operate their own independent gift card schemes.”
“While larger chains will have the resources and personnel to adjust fairly quickly to these changes, for many small businesses there may be some initial confusion about their responsibilities.”
“The NRA urges the NSW Government to take an education-based approach to the changes and ensuring retailers come into line with the new rules, rather than opting for strict penalties for those who might get it wrong in the early stages.”
“The NRA will do its best to get the message out to retailers about their new responsibilities, and we hope to do this in partnership with the Government.”
The National Retail Association is Australia’s largest and most representative retail industry association. It has been serving businesses in the retail and fast food sectors for close to 100 years.
For media inquiries contact the NRA’s media unit on (07) 3221 9222 or 0467 792 013.