Asia

New 24-hour trading laws set to awaken Sydney's nightlife

SYDNEY (XINHUA) – Sydney’s nightlife will get a much needed shot in the arm, with new laws allowing 24-hour trading throughout the Australian city’s busiest districts, removing restrictions on how visitors and residents enjoy the harbour city.

The changes were unanimously approved by the City Council on Tuesday (May 14), following a resident survey which showed over 10,000 people strongly supported more late night activities.

“More than 10,000 people told us they want Sydney to have a diverse and exciting night-time economy with events and activities for people of all ages and interests,” Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore said.

“I’m pleased that Council has unanimously backed this proposal to give retailers more flexibility, to give visitors more late night options and to enhance our reputation on the world stage.”

Businesses in the city centre will now be able to apply for a 24-hr trading licence, while businesses in residential areas on the periphery can apply for extended trading hours.

Additionally, a number of key new up-and-coming suburbs with high rates of development will get “late-night trading areas” to give residents more time to shop, dine and do business after work.

The overwhelming support for change by Sydneysiders stems from controversial lockout laws introduced by the state government in 2014 to curb alcohol related violence – although critics say that the laws have also stifled the city’s culture.

“I hope these changes encourage the New South Wales government to reconsider the lockout laws and help Sydney regain its status as one of the world’s premier late night destinations,” Moore said.

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