Lease changes give owners more certainty

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Changes to lease legislation in NSW will clarify some issues around community pharmacy leases and give owners more certainty, says the Guild

The Guild’s NSW Branch congratulated the NSW Government on the passage of these amendments to the Retail Leases Act today.

The amendments clarify some issues around community pharmacy leases and give additional certainty to pharmacy owners.

NSW Branch President Rick Samimi said: “We commend the NSW Government for passing this package of reforms which seek to improve transparency and fairness for landlords and retail tenants.”

The amendment Bill includes significant positive changes across sections of the Act, and clears some of the issues around the reporting of sales by pharmacies through the removal of dispensary sales data, the Guild says.

“This is an overdue and welcome reform, and we join with the Australian Retailers Association in acknowledging a very positive action by the NSW Government,” Mr Samimi says.

“It is an appropriate recognition of the unique characteristics of community pharmacy businesses and will make it easier for tenants and landlords to comply with appropriate lease requirements.”

A Retail Code of Industry Practice has been developed by the ARA, Franchise Council and Pharmacy Guild, and agreed to by the Shopping Centre Council of Australia.

The Code allows retailers greater transparency when negotiating leases, not only enhancing competition in the retailing space, but also putting retailers on a level playing field with landlords. Beyond NSW, other States and Territories are also looking at the Code, and progress towards a uniform national position is strongly encouraged by the Guild.

The Australian Retailers’ Association’s Russell Zimmerman says the improved retail lease protections and streamlined processes will create stronger and fairer relationships between retail tenants and landlords.

“As the retail industry is constantly evolving it’s great to see the NSW Government implementing progressive changes that ensure the legislation remain relevant to all retailers throughout Australia,” Mr Zimmerman says.

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