Primark said that it took a £430 million hit on trading as stores were forced to close during the second lockdown.



However the retailer said that despite the loss, all orders placed with its suppliers would be honoured.

Chairman Michael McLintock, told investors today: “Stores in our major markets of the Republic of Ireland, England, France and Belgium reopened in the last week. Sales in the days since reopening in each of these markets have once again been very strong.

“We have extended the opening hours during this festive season in most of our stores in the Republic of Ireland and England to cater for the anticipated higher customer demand and to help ensure a safer environment by spreading shopping hours over a longer period.

McLintock said that across its markets 34 stores remained temporarily closed, including all stores in Northern Ireland and Austria, and the government-announced periods of closure vary by market.

He said that these enforced closures represented 7% of its total retail selling space compared to 62% when the highest number of stores were closed in November. 

Furthermore, McLintock said that it had completed all practical preparations for the end of the Brexit transition period this month and contingency plans were in place “should our businesses experience some disruption at that time”.