The COVID-19 crisis has the potential to put many local businesses in distress, despite HMGoG’s call to private landlords to assist their commercial tenants.
The trading environment has continued a downward slide, and although many landlords – such as Fairhomes Group – have heeded the call of Government, some others remain silent and in some cases have neither been in touch with their tenants, nor replied to tenant queries. This is in contrast to the experience of many Chamber & GFSB members who have found that some landlords have even gone much further than the HMGoG advice and offered rent-free periods for the next quarter.
In a joint press release, the Chamber & GFSB commented, “This has been very welcome and demonstrates the strong bonds of solidarity which we have as a community.”
They added, “The Chamber and the GFSB would like to thank those landlords who have already taken these steps to help their tenants. We would also call on the Landlord’s Association and all remaining commercial landlords to assist their tenants in the current crisis. Now is the time for action. Now is the time to assist those businesses to try to keep trading so at least they can continue to exist and hold on to their staff in the long term.”
“It is incumbent on each of us to do what we can to help each other. When trading improves, we do not want to look back with regret and think if only we had done more to help. Do it today. Do it now.”
Fairhomes said it felt a special obligation to its tenants by saying, “Within Ocean Village and WTC [there are] small independent business run by people we know and who are already feeling the impact of the current situation, and we recognise that they need our help now”.
Fairhomes also wished to convey public thanks to all frontline workers in The Rock.
Gibraltar Insight is keen to hear from commercial tenants if their landlords have been supportive, understanding, or lacking. Any contact will be treated in confidence. firstname.lastname@example.org
tar Insight is keen to hear from commercial tenants if their landlords have been supportive, understanding, or lacking. Any contact will be treated in confidence. email@example.com
COVID UPGRADED TO ’MAJOR INCIDENT’
The COVID crisis in Gibraltar has been upgraded to a “Major Incident” by Her Majesty’s Government of Gibraltar.
This development allows all Government agencies to act within an enhanced response framework.
A Government spokesperson was keen to point out that this emergency structure is well rehearsed. Trials for such eventualities and different scenarios are run throughout the year to ensure that all emergency responders are ready to react in such eventualities.
The Chief Minister, the Hon Fabian Picardo said, “This declaration merely formalises many of the command structures which have been so effective throughout the last few weeks. During that time, we have been in daily contact with the Convent and the Ministry of Defence”.