The Swiss People’s Party (UDC/SVP) in Geneva wants shopping hours in Geneva to be standardized and extended.
In general, French-speaking Switzerland has stricter laws on opening hours that the rest of Switzerland. For example a Migros store in Zurich is open until 9pm every night except Sunday. A similar store in Geneva is only open until 9pm one day a week. The rest of the week it shuts between 6pm and 7:30pm.
Stéphane Florey from the UDC reckons this is one reason why Geneva residents take their money and spend it across the border in France – much of the canton is close to France, which stays open later. The Tribune de Genève wrote that according to Florey, store owners have requested this.
Pascal Vanderberghe, director of the book store Payot, told the newspaper that employees are leaving the office later and later, but everything is closed.
The UDC plan proposes changing the law to allow shops to stay open until 8pm every day of the week except Sunday. At the same time their plan would scrap late night shipping until 10pm on Thursdays.
Current rules force shops to close at 7pm, with some exceptions – 7:30pm on Friday and 6pm on Saturday. Most shops in Geneva must close on Sundays.
The Socialists and MCG were more or less open to the UDC’s idea according to the newspaper. Unions however were not. They pointed out that there is no collective agreement covering the industry, something they would want to see before agreeing to anything.