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'Silver economy' panel set up

The Commerce & Economic Development Bureau today established the Advisory Panel on Silver Economy and convened its first meeting with the aim of initiating research on the development of Hong Kong’s growing elderly population as a consumer segment.    Chairing the panel, Secretary for Commerce & Economic Development Algernon Yau said the elderly demographic was emerging as an important part of the city’s economy.    He highlighted that many products and services designed to enhance the quality of life enjoyed by elderly residents are spurring growth and business opportunities.    Mr Yau added that promoting such products and services can help to foster the development of the so-called silver economy and unleash business potential in the elderly market, whilst also catering to the aspirations and needs of elderly people. He said this would be the advisory panel’s focus.     At today’s meeting, the panel endorsed its terms of reference, reviewed statistics relating to

Dec retail sales up 7.8%

The value of total retail sales in December, provisionally estimated at $36.3 billion, rose 7.8% compared with the same month in 2022, the Census & Statistics Department announced today.

 

After netting out the effect of price changes over the same period, the provisional estimate represents a 4.8% year-on-year increase.

 

Of the total retail sales value in December, online sales accounted for 7.8%. Provisionally estimated at $2.8 billion, the value of this segment went down by 29.7% compared with a year earlier.

 

The value of sales of jewellery, watches and clocks, and valuable gifts increased 50.1%.

 

Increases were also recorded in the sales of other consumer goods not elsewhere classified (up 23%); wearing apparel (up 19.3%); commodities in department stores (up 4.6%); medicines and cosmetics (up 32.7%); motor vehicles and parts (up 3.5%); footwear, allied products and other clothing accessories (up 13.2%); furniture and fixtures (up 3.1%); books, newspapers, stationery and gifts (up 18.1%); and optical shops (up 11.5%).

 

By contrast, the value of sales of commodities in supermarkets decreased 6.3% over a year earlier.

 

Sales also declined in electrical goods and other consumer durable goods not elsewhere classified (down 27.9% in value); food, alcoholic drinks and tobacco (down 1.6%); fuels (down 12%); and Chinese drugs and herbs (down 5.5%).

 

Noting that the value of total retail sales increased further over a year earlier, the Government said it grew notably by 16.2% for 2023 as a whole.

 

Looking ahead, apart from stating that visitor arrivals should increase further alongside the continued recovery of handling capacity, it pointed out that rising household income also bodes well for local consumption.

 

These factors, coupled with its efforts to promote mega events and launch various activities including "Day x Night Vibes @ 18 Districts", should provide support to retail businesses, the Government added.


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