Retail in Asia

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HK tycoon urges city to welcome Chinese shoppers

Hong Kong should welcome mainland Chinese shoppers as turning them away will damage its retail industry and may lead to job losses, according to Ronnie Chan, chairman of Hang Lung Properties Ltd.

Mr Chan’s comments come as Hong Kong residents demand controls on traders who cross the border to buy necessities to resell in China, driving up local costs of living. There were rallies in Hong Kong last month against the so-called parallel traders and scuffles broke out between police and protesters.

Total visitors to Hong Kong, including those from China, fell 12.4 per cent during 3 to 7 April Ching Ming and Easter holidays, the government said, with Chief Executive Leung Chun- ying describing the decline as a "wake up call" and listing anti-parallel trading protests among reasons for the drop.