Trade and Industry Minister David Cretney admits there is much to consider after the Council of Ministers announced it would scrutinise plans to create a Tesco superstore in Douglas.
The proposals were unveiled last month and, if approved, would lead to the store doubling in size, with the creation of up to 250 new jobs.
Mr Cretney admits it's a difficult time for the retailing sector, and some investment decisions could be put on hold until the outcome is known:
"My department is responsible for the retail industry in the Isle of Man [and] it has in the past, in my opinion, been a bit of a 'secondary sector', regarded by some.
"I think it's very important, it's going through a very difficult time, a very challenging time for small, independent retailers, of which I am one, as you know.
"Fortunately we are doing alright, but for that reason I have to excuse myself from any decisions that are taken regarding this, so let's just clarify that.
"We have to have an eye on what's best for the Isle of Man economy, and this planning application is now 'in' and as such any further comment on it has to be limited, really."