It will take several years for restaurants to return to the pre-pandemic state

It will take several years for restaurants to return to the pre-pandemic state

European gastronomy will need several years to recover from the pre-pandemic state, according to an analysis of the National Debt Register. Experts point out that only in Italy, the catering sector is responsible for 4% GDP and 5% employments.

According to the estimates of the Italian Federation of restaurateurs FIPE, which is referred to in the analysis sent to PAP by the National Debt Register, in Italy, due to a two-month lockdown in the first half of the year, the catering industry lost at least EUR 25 billion, i.e. approx. 28%. annual revenue. "In the second quarter of 2020, when many catering businesses recovered, the loss was around EUR 13 billion and corresponded to a 64% drop in revenues compared to 2019." - underlined. FIPE estimates that the pandemic may not survive as much as 50,000. enterprises.

KRD analysts point out that so far the restaurant industry was responsible for 4% Italian GDP and 5% employments. As a result of the first wave of pandemics, there were approx. 300 thousand people at risk of liquidation jobs in this sector (data from the consulting company Bain).

Due to the intensification of the second wave, in October the Italian government announced an order to close bars and restaurants at midnight and a maximum of six guests per table. For now, Seats must close at 6 pm. Some regions, such as Lombardy, have gone a step further and have announced a curfew at 11 pm, further shortening restaurant hours, stresses the KRD.

An order to close restaurants an hour earlier could lead to up to € 500 million in losses per month in the sector, FIPE figures show. Analysts recall that during the first lockdown - from mid-March to mid-May - restaurants were not allowed to receive guests. At the beginning of May, the possibility of selling meals with delivery was introduced. Due to restrictive restrictions (consisting in the need to maintain at least 1-meter break between groups of guests, disinfecting restaurants twice a day, writing down guest data in the event of a need to notify about quarantine, an order for employees to wear masks and gloves) and the prospect of a significantly lower turnover, 1 / 3 of all restaurateurs started in May.

Spain has also introduced new restrictions in connection with the coronavirus. More than a week ago, all bars and restaurants in Catalonia were closed, for now for two weeks with the possibility of extension. In the Madrid region, restaurants have been ordered to close at 23:00, with a maximum of six guests per table. In some regions, the number of guests in restaurants was reduced to 50%. available places inside buildings and up to 60% outside. "Within three days of introducing these restrictions, the HoReCa Hosteleria Madrid association announced a loss of EUR 8 million in the Madrid region alone," said KRD analysts.

They cite the calculations from mid-July, which show that approx. 40,000 Spanish hotels, bars and restaurants have been closed since the beginning of the pandemic. "This corresponded to 13% of all such enterprises in the country. It was expected that by the end of the year this number would increase to 65 thousand, which would mean that 1/5 of all HoReCa companies were closed during the year" - we read. According to the data of the Hosteleria de Espana restaurateurs' association quoted by the KRD, the industry's revenues may decline in 2020 by half compared to the previous year, and the number of jobs at risk ranges from 900,000 up to 1.1 million.

In Germany, due to the second wave of the pandemic, a ban on the sale of alcohol after 11 p.m. was introduced in October, and in the capital area, restaurants, bars and clubs were banned from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. On the other hand, in Cologne and Frankfurt, it is forbidden to sell alcohol after 10 p.m., restaurants may also be open only until this time.

KRD cites data from the Statista portal, which shows that, for example, on October 21, German bars and restaurants were visited by over 14% fewer visitors than the year before. Analysts recalled that during the first lockdown, which lasted from March to May, all restaurants in Germany were closed - they could only prepare food with delivery. "According to the hotel and restaurant association DEHOGA, German companies from the HoReCa segment reported losses of EUR 17.6 billion in March-June" - it was noted. Revenues in July and August were lower by 40% YOY, and the forecasts for the entire 2020 indicate that the sector's revenues will decline by almost half compared to 2019.

In Poland, new restrictions in connection with the coronavirus have entered into force since Saturday. Valid a ban on the operation of a stationary restaurant. "Possible implementation services consisting in the preparation and serving of food takeaway and getting my" - we read on the  www.gov.pl .

According to the KRD, the European industry will need several years to return to the pre-pandemic state. Analysts note that a separate issue is whether and at what time after the end of the pandemic, the sector will manage to rebuild customer confidence and indicate that covid restrictions may permanently change consumer habits. (PAP)

author: Magdalena Jarco