Faro shopping centre crisis

The Atrium shopping centre, which opened in the centre of Faro two years ago to revitalise commerce in the area, is facing closure.

Of the 30 available shops, only three are occupied, with a newsagent, a café and a jewellery shop, and the three-screen cinema complex, which can cater for up to 500 people, has closed.

Earlier this month, one shop keeper called the PSP police after the managers of the shopping centre tried to reduce the opening hours to just 8pm instead of 11.30pm.

The shopkeeper told Portuguese newspaper Correio da Manhã (CM): “The contract allows me to stay open until 11.30pm. I refused the early closure, which was understood by the authorities.”

The shopkeeper added: “The administration should be working towards stimulating the place not harming those who are trying to resist the crisis.”

A spokesman from the PSP police told the Algarve Resident: “The police were called at 8pm on June 14. This was an administrative dispute but there was no aggression. One party did not want to follow the agreement set out in a contract.”

The spokesman added: “This situation is no longer being followed by the police. It is an administrative issue.”

At the time the Algarve Resident went to press on Wednesday, no one from the Atrium shopping centre was available for comment.