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Are big-box stores emptying the city centre?

Info IEB Number 26, December 2016

In recent years, many governments have adopted restrictive policies in response to the opening of big-box stores. Before 1990, many European countries underwent increasing market liberalization, as a consequence of which the retail sector, and the food retail sector in particular, expanded greatly with the opening of many new supermarkets. In the Spanish case, the five biggest supermarket chains opened their first stores in the 1970s and by 1990 they accounted for 45% of the market, according to figures published by the Spanish Ministry of Economy.

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