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30% fewer newsagents than a decade ago
There are nearly one-third fewer newsagents in Brussels than there were a decade ago. The figure was released this week by the SNI small business federation.
In 2008, there were more than 500 shops dedicated to newspapers and magazines in the capital. At the end of 2017, there were only 354, a decrease of 31%.
“We are encouraging the outlets to become pick-up points for packages,” Christine Mattheeuws of the federation told Bruzz. “That is particularly useful for Brussels residents, as 60% live within a five-minute walk of a delivery point. And that is good for both mobility and the environment.”
Not only have sales in newspapers and magazines dropped since the start of the digital revolution, but so have sales in other products often bought at newsagents: tobacco and lottery tickets. People are also turning much more to supermarkets for those products.
Compensation from Bpost, however, is not always worth the hassle of being a pick-up point, according to Mattheeuws. “It means more work, and we often see that the effort isn’t worth the reward. We plan to enter negotiations with Bpost on this point.”
Photo: Nina Francesca/BELGA