Catering and hospitality industry increasingly dissatisfied over new restrictive measures

Restaurateurs in the city of Arandjelovac are demanding that the government’s Crisis Unit allow them to work as much on a daily basis as shopping malls, factories or ski resorts, or that the state exempts them from paying taxes and contributions.

Milos Kuveljic, a member of the city’s restaurateurs’ association and owner of the Divino restaurant, said that the Crisis Unit’s decision to reduce working hours last weekend for restaurateurs to 2 p.m. was unreasonable and that they dreading the next decision.

“Such measures have caused financial damage to the entire chain of small business owners, stores, markets, florists, musicians, photographers and the like,” Kuveljic said.

He added that his restaurant grossed less than 8,000 dinars on the two days of the weekend and that he needs at least 180,000 dinars a month for the six employees to be paid at least the minimum wage of about 32,000 dinars. On top of it all, he has to pay taxes and payroll contributions of almost 19,000 dinars per worker on these 32,000 dinars, which means that he needs to have at least 200,000 dinars per month just for payroll costs.

Kuveljic underlined that restaurant and bar owners that they do not want the Crisis Unit to treat them as second-class citizens, or if they do, “that they support their workers, since their financial situation is catastrophic.”

“How is it possible that the virus enters bars after 2 p.m., but not in shopping malls where there are 150 people at any given time or cable cars in ski resorts where 10 people fit in a small space,” Kuveljić wondered, concluding that the state cannot limit their working hours without abolishing or reducing taxes.

(, 01.03.2021)

This post is also available in: Italiano

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