June 2, 2022
Hong Kong’s – retail sales increased by 11.7 percent year-on-year to HK$30.2 billion ($3.85 billion) in April, after two consecutive months of declines, according to the latest figures released by the Census and Statistics Department on Wednesday.
The significant rebound in the value of retail sales was mainly due to the receding COVID-19 pandemic and the disbursement of of the first batch of government consumption vouchers, a government spokesman said.
The significant rebound in the value of total retail sales was mainly due to the receding COVID-19 pandemic and the disbursement of of the first batch of government consumption vouchers, a government spokesman said
In volume terms, retail sales in April rose 8.1 percent from a year earlier, compared with a 16.8 percent decline in March.
For the January to April period, the value of retail sales fell 3.1 percent from the year-ago period while volume dropped 6.1 percent.
The retail sector has been under pressure particularly after the financial hub imposed stringent restrictions to curb the coronavirus, although the government expects the sector to pick up as cases decline and measures are eased.
Of the total retail sales value in April, online sales accounted for 8.2 percent, with a provisional estimate of HK$2.5 billion, up 34.8 percent over the same month last year.
The revised estimate of online retail sales in March 2022 increased by 31.2 percent compared with a year earlier while the provisional estimate of the value of online retail sales in the first four months of this year rose by 36 percent year-on-year.
The value of sales of electrical goods and other consumer durable goods, not elsewhere classified, surged 40.9 percent in April while furniture and fixtures grew 27.5 percent. Sales of books, newspapers, stationery and gifts fell by 10.5 percent.
Looking ahead, the spokesman said that the retail sector should continue to recover provided that the local pandemic situation remains stable.
The consumption voucher scheme and other measures rolled out by the government will further support consumption demand, the spokesman said.
Hong Kong eased COVID restrictions further in May as cases eased, reopening beaches and swimming pools, and extending hours for bars, while restaurants are allowed to serve eight people per table, up from four.