The blows that the shopkeepers of the Larnaca shopping center have been receiving in recent months, which is leading with mathematical precision to decline, are not far off, unless the situation drastically changes for the better until next summer.
Speaking to our newspaper, the president of POVEK Larnaca & # 8211; Famagusta Kyriakos Ambizas sounded the alarm, saying that if in the coming summer months the current very bad situation in relation to the economic crisis and accuracy does not change and mass tourism does not come to the city, then small businesses will & # 8217; begin to close one after the other. “A small store, which pays rent every month, will be impossible to & # 8217; “endure for many more months with a negligible turnover,” he said.
The pandemic, the operation of the Metropolis Mall, the war in Ukraine and, to be precise, have greatly reduced the shopping movement in the Larnaca shopping center. Kyriakos Ambizas stated that from the autumn of 2021 until today, the turnover of businesses in the mall is estimated to have decreased, on average, by about 50%. “I do not have specific information for each shopkeeper individually. However, from the discussions I often have with them, there are cases of shopkeepers whose business turnover is reduced by more than 50%, while in some other cases it has been reduced by just under 50%. Unfortunately, it is not the best image we have at the moment in the bazaar of our city. Things are much worse than & # 8217; what we expected. And this, because after the pandemic and the opening of the Mall, the war in Ukraine was added and the accuracy, which have made things even worse than & # 8217; what it was in previous months.
“Tourism has not started yet and no one knows for sure when we will have mass tourism this year”, added Mr. Ambizas. The president of POVEK Larnaca reminded that the shopkeepers expect from the Municipality of Larnaca acceleration of the procedures for the infrastructure projects that must be done in the shopping center, in order to attract a buying public. In previous meetings with Mayor Andreas Vyras, shopkeepers called for more sidewalks, shading of shopping streets to protect visitors from the weather and a solution to the hot problem with a lack of adequate parking.
Three firms closed
There were three large department stores, well-known brands, that in recent months locked in the Larnaca mall and moved to the Metropolis Mall, except of course a few other small stores that also closed. These are the stores “Zara”, “Bershka” and “Puplic”, the closure of which, according to POVEK, was particularly harmful. “They were well-known, branded brands, which as names attracted people to the mall. “The closure of these stores has caused great damage to our shopping center”, admitted K. Ambizas. Finally, the president of POVEK Larnaca & # 8211; Famagusta expressed the view that the delay observed in the delivery and operation of the new municipal market, at the end of Ermou Street, has not played a significant role in reducing traffic in the mall. Local authorities estimate that the new market will be operational by next summer, as things stand. Around the same time, the renovation project of the Zouhouri building complex, near the municipal market, is expected to be delivered.