The chain announced this week plans to shut down 11 of its 26 flagship stores across France by the end of the year amid growing post-Brexit supply chain issues. It comes as France continues to be blighted with shop closures – a situation only made worse by the Covid pandemic.
And claims that the UK is the root cause of the problems were quickly swatted away by many Express.co.uk readers.
Reader Lawrence Ingraham raged: “The EU needs us more than we need them. FACT.”
Reader JL77 said: “Blame Macron and his stupid red tape!”
Meanwhile Exit_Stage West wrote: “Brexit is being used as an excuse for many management decisions.
She continued: “And it’s not just in the food business, it’s also in the fashion business – 42 percent of Britain’s luxury goods are exported to the EU.
“Designers are caught paying in fees, deliveries are late and that costs a lot of money in the luxury fashion business so much so that Paul Smith is talking about moving his production, what little is in the UK, to Europe.
“So, it’s a bad sign for Britain’s economy but it’s also a really bad sign for Paris, which already has a blight of empty stores.
“After Covid, every third store is closed or shut.
“Madame Le Maire, she wants to run for president, she somehow couldn’t work this out so Marks & Spencer doesn’t close that huge store close to the Apple Store in the heart of St Germaine.”
Ms Thomas added: “Leaving it sitting empty is a bad sign for her coming campaign.”
Shops across France only began reopening earlier in the summer after it was battered with successive waves of coronavirus.
This led to its GDP falling by an estimated £88 billion last year due to the severe blow delivered to its tourism industry.
M&S’ International Director Pail fruition said: “M&S has a long history of serving customers in France and this is not a decision we or our partner SFH have taken lightly.
“As things stand today, the supply chain complexities in place following the UK’s exit from the European Union, now make it near impossible for us to serve fresh and chilled products to customers to the high standards they expect, resulting in an ongoing impact to the performance of our business.”
The 11 stores that will close by the end of this year are located predominantly across the high streets of Paris, while the nine run by Lagardere are located in travel hubs such as airports, railway, and metro stations.
A spokesperson for Prime Minister Boris Johnson defended the Brexit process, saying: ” “We believe that the approach we have taken is the correct one.
“It is something that the public voted for and it is already bringing benefits to the public.”
Published at Sun, 19 Sep 2021 16:51:00 +0000