Updated September 30, 2018 12:00:51 Australian big retailers including Woolworths and the Woolworth Group are backing a proposal to scrap a one-off sale of pools that would see customers pay upfront for their property.
Key points: Woolworth’s chairman says the new plan could be better for customers than the old policy, and the retailer wants a longer-term plan for pool sales The company says the move would not impact its customers or increase costs for the retailer A spokesperson for Woolworth said the changes to the pool policy would not affect its customers.
“Woolworths has long been committed to protecting the value of its pool property and will continue to work with stakeholders to identify the best ways to ensure that our customers have access to a pool they can afford,” the spokesperson said in a statement.
“As a retailer, we are focused on delivering the best value for money to our customers and we will continue working with stakeholders on a longer term pool policy.”
A statement from Woolworth told the ABC it supported the changes and the plan to phase them out “from 2018 to 2022”.
“We support the Government’s plan for Pool Sales that will be phased out in 2019, and are supportive of the Government taking this approach as it works to achieve its goal of improving our customer experience,” it said.
The statement added that Woolworth was still committed to continuing to provide customers with a “great value for their money” and to working with its retailers to deliver a long-term pool policy that protects customers and the environment.
The Woolworth statement said the company would also work with its retail partners to ensure the “best value for its customers and to work through a longer period of time to ensure we meet the Government objectives”.
The Woolie Group and its retail division have long been concerned about rising water quality and pollution levels in pools.
The retailer has spent years lobbying against the Government and its policies on water quality.
“The Woolworth policy is a key pillar of our business and has been a core pillar of the Woolies commitment to providing our customers with the best product and service,” the Woolie spokesperson said.
“We remain committed to working towards an environment where our customers feel comfortable in their properties, whether they are renting, owning or owning a property.”
The statement said Woolworth would also continue to support the efforts of its retailers and “all stakeholders in the pool and water sector”.
It said the Woolys policy would also be phased in over a five-year period to ensure a long term plan was in place for the sale of pool space.
Woolworth will now work with retailers to find a long period of action plan that could address concerns from the retailer.