Vaccination management in the shopping mall and three proposals to the authorities from retail and development market players

Retail and development market players once again jointly appealed to the government and state authorities to convey their position on the effective management of vaccination of Ukrainians in shopping malls and the threatening impact of restrictive innovations on the activities of the entire industry.

The press conference in the news agency "UNIAN", which took place on November 10, 2021, was attended by Andrii Zhuk, Chairman of the board of the Ukrainian Retail Association (RAU); Maksym Havriushyn, Chairman of the board of the Ukrainian Council of shopping centers (UCSC); Anna Chubotina, CEO of Arricano; Volodymyr Honcharov, Deputy General Director of EPICENTR K LLC, Pavlo Savchuk, Executive Director of Ahro-Torhova Merezha LLC; Nataliia Petrivska, GR Director of the Ukrainian Retail Association (RAU).

Overcoming the epidemiological crisis and vaccinating citizens are top priorities for governments in all countries of the world. Developers in Ukraine immediately joined the process and gave a helping hand to the authorities. Therefore, vaccination points have been launched in most shopping malls. To date, about 100 such points are equipped in the shopping malls, where  over 500-900 Ukrainians receive vaccination every day. 

In shopping malls with high traffic, the share of accidentally vaccinated people (that is, those who did not plan to be vaccinated) can reach 20-30%. 

"Vaccination centers in the shopping malls are more effective than vaccination centers in other places. It is convenient and comfortable to get vaccinated here. Therefore, we believe that more attention should be paid to vaccination centers for the population in shopping malls and more resources should be allocated by the state for their operation – both vaccines and medical personnel," says Maksym Havriushyn, Chairman of the board of the Ukrainian Council of Shopping Centers.

"During the quarantine, shopping malls were transformed into a socially-oriented industry, which by its actions proved that it can help solve many important issues and be a locomotive, including in information campaigns on Immunization, setting up vaccination centers and reducing social tension. For example, more than 50 thousand citizens were vaccinated during July-November in the City Mall shopping mall in Zaporizhzhia.  And this is close  to 10% of all vaccinated people in Zaporizka region. In other words, shopping malls have demonstrated an effective model for managing the vaccination process, creating comfortable conditions for the medical team and people. At the same time, shopping malls and retailers face the most restrictions in their work and regular inspections by government agencies. The industry is once again turning into a ritual sacrifice and incurs huge losses and these are jobs that are again under threat, and taxes that are not received by the state treasury",- said Anna Chubotina, CEO of Arricano. 

At the press conference, impressive figures were announced regarding losses for the industry, as well as the shortfall in tax revenues to the state budget. For the example of just one retail chain, tax losses can amount to up to UAH 40 million per month. After all, retail and development is one of the leading sectors of the country's economy. 

"The turnover of non-food retail stores decreased from 60 to 80% compared to the period before the restrictions were introduced. The requirement for all visitors to have a negative PCR/rapid test result or a certificate with two doses of vaccination significantly reduced customer activity, which will invariably lead to another crisis in the field of trade. As a result, the state will not receive taxes to the budget," said Andrii Zhuk, Chairman of the board of the Ukrainian Retail Association.

The participants of the press conference spoke about the expediency of cooperation between the government and business in order to avoid bankruptcies, unemployment, doomscrolling and emergency subsidies in the future. To properly manage the situation today, unite and work out this challenge productively, while maintaining jobs and helping the industry survive.  

After conducting an audit of the current situation, market players are convinced that only three changes to the current innovations can significantly encourage the industry:
- to oblige local authorities to comply with the list of quarantine restrictions provided for by the resolution of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine No. 1236, and not to introduce more stringent restrictions;
- to analyze the effectiveness of open vaccination points. Those that are not popular among the population should be moved to shopping malls, ensuring the constant availability of vaccines and doctors;
- allow people who also have a document confirming receipt of one dose of the vaccine (yellow certificate) to visit shopping malls, non-food stores and other establishments subject to restrictions in the" red " zone.

Video recording of the press conference "First results of retail and shopping malls during quarantine":