Date
17 January 2017
Hang Lung Group chairman Ronnie Chan (right) and managing director Philip Chen weigh in on China's retail market. Chan sees continuing weakness amid a slowing economy. Photo: HKEJ
Hang Lung Group chairman Ronnie Chan (right) and managing director Philip Chen weigh in on China's retail market. Chan sees continuing weakness amid a slowing economy. Photo: HKEJ

Slowing economy to keep China retail market depressed

China’s retail market is likely to remain weak in the coming year amid a slowing economy, according to Ronnie Chan, chairman of Hang Lung Group Ltd. (00010.HK).

The faltering growth rate is depressing retail consumption, Chan was quoted as saying by the Hong Kong Economic Journal.

“The growth is unlikely to accelerate over the next six months to one year,” he said.

Chan declined to comment whether Hang Lung’s shopping mall tenants in the mainland have asked for rent cuts.

Top-tier retailers in Plaza 66 in Shanghai are not seeking rent cuts and some are taking bigger retail space, said Ho Hau-cheong, executive director of Hang Lung Properties Ltd. (00101.HK), a unit of Hang Lung Group.

Hang Lung Properties will spend HK$1.3 billion (US$167.7 million) to renovate Plaza 66 and Grand Gateway 66, its Shanghai flagships, and expect a return after four years.

Olympia 66, a new shopping mall in Dalian in northeast China’s Liaoning province, will open in the fourth quarter, said Philip Chen, managing director of Hang Lung Properties.

The mall has a floor area of 2.4 million square feet, making it Hang Lung’s largest shopping complex in the mainland.

Hang Lung shopping malls in Kunming and Wuhan are scheduled to open after 2018.

[Chinese version中文版]

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