China’s Ministry of Finance has approved applications to open 16 duty free arrival shops in 10 international airports and at six land border crossing points, introducing limited competition to the nation’s growing duty free market for the first time.
Four state-backed enterprises with existing duty free retail operations have qualified to bid for the 16 arrival shop licenses that are due to be awarded during the next six months.
The four companies are: China Duty Free Group (CDFG), China National Service Corporation For Chinese Personnel Working Abroad (CNSC), Shenzhen Duty Free and Zhuhai Duty Free.
“There is departure, arrival and downtown duty free shopping in China, now arrival shopping will be open to limited competition,” commented a source at one of the operating companies selected to bid for the licenses.
Probably Shenzhen Duty Free and Zhuhai Duty Free are not interested in operating nationally, so the airport competition will be between CDFG and CNSC as they are the only two national operating companies.
The 10 airports approved to open duty free arrival shops include some of China’s top ten airports.
New airports selected to open duty free arrival shops are believed to include: Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport, Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport, Dalian Zhoushiuzi International Airport, Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport and Tianjin Binhai International Airport.
Ministry of Finance regulations permit the arrival shops to sell perfume and cosmetics, liquor and tobacco, confectionery, fashion items, accessories and watches.
Constructing the arrival shops is expected to take about six months after each license is awarded. Consequently most of the new arrival shops are likely to begin trading around September and October 2017.
(Source: TR Business)