Welsh Retail Consortium (WRC) has been launched on 28 June 2012 to give a louder voice to the retailers, who make up around one in ten of all businesses in Wales.
The new retail association is a sister body to the British Retail Consortium (BRC) and will build on the previous BRC activity in the country.
WRC is committed to enhance the retail sector’s reputation and ensure the Welsh government and local authorities understand how they benefit from working with retailers to support investment and encourage growth.
A new report – ‘Welsh Retail: Serving Our Communities’ was also launched, which draws on research by Oxford Economics and the Oxford Institute of Retail Management to present key statistics about the retail sector.
Retail is the largest private sector employer in Wales, accounting for more than 11% of the total workforce. It provides jobs for around 131,000 people.
WRC director Mark Ross said that retail is at the heart of communities across Wales, providing jobs for more than one in ten people who are in work.
"It’s a sector which is always innovating and which has great capacity to grow – just what the country needs to establish a strong recovery," Ross added.
"Retailers, national politicians and local councillors share many goals. We all want vibrant town centres where businesses can thrive and we support investment in Welsh agriculture to ensure the success of food supply chains.
"These are just two of the issues we look forward to discussing in the coming months as the Welsh Retail Consortium gets down to work."