The World Union of Wholesale Markets (WUWM) Retail Conference, held between 12-14 June in Hamburg, Germany, highlighted the importance of retail and street markets to economies and communities in the European Union.
The event, hosted by Hamburg Wholesale Market and the Hamburg Market Traders Association, revealed that an estimated 25,000 retail markets are currently operating in the EU, with over 450,000 traders operating in those markets.
Additionally, more than 1m people work on those retail markets, which have a combined turnover surpassing €35bn.
A declaration signed by WUWM members at the event has urged the European Commission and its member states to formally
acknowledge the vital role of street and retail markets and asks for
support, such as the provision of funding to enable further studies
into the sector, to be provided.
Under the banner European Retail Markets Driving Communities, the event also saw discussions on strengthening and developing retail markets throughout Europe, and provided an opportunity to discuss the need for effective
community involvement in market development and the need for efficiency in
retail market promotions. Delegates also reviewed the latest technical
innovations in market equipment and practices.
Technical visits were made to the Hamburg wholesale market, as well as to Großneumarkt and Langenhorner Markt – two retail markets within Hamburg – and to Borco Hoehns, a specialist market equipment company situated in nearby Rotenburg.
The conference was aimed at retail market authorities and decision-makers, retail market traders (and their associations), local authority representatives, town centre managers, town planners, government agencies working for retail, commercial and food retail businesses, and professionals interested in the social and/or economic benefits of markets.