Retail sales slide predicted to worsen

Business | 26 Jun 2019 7:39 pm

Hong Kong retail sales will shrink by 5 percent year-on-year to HK$460 billion this year, compared with an earlier forecast of a 3 percent decline, a survey by PricewaterhouseCoopers found.

The revision reflects a weaker outlook for the second half of the year, due to a combination of factors including external headwinds, economic instability, as well as the projected decrease in tourist arrivals and spending.

Michael Cheng, Asia Pacific and Hong Kong/China Consumer Markets Leader, said: “Local retail sales and mainland tourist arrivals are expected to continue on a downward trend through the rest of 2019, indicating a slowing consumer market in Hong Kong. Electrical and luxury goods are set to shrink further, while consumer goods like health and beauty products will hold well with modest growth. The recent political and social unrest, temporary closure of the Peak Tram due to renovations, coupled with a lack of new tourist attractions might lower mainland tourists’ appetite to visit Hong Kong in the short term. "Meanwhile, a weakening economy as well as uncertainty surrounding the trade dispute present risks to the outlook in the medium to longer run.''


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