Date
21 July 2017
Parallel traders (inset) are busy packing infant formula, instant noodles and other goods at the Sheung Shui Plaza. Photos: Apple Daily, Google Map
Parallel traders (inset) are busy packing infant formula, instant noodles and other goods at the Sheung Shui Plaza. Photos: Apple Daily, Google Map

Parallel traders make a comeback at Sheung Shui Plaza

Mainland parallel traders have returned to Sheung Shui Plaza, months after the Lands Department ordered the closure of a unit in the industrial building for violation of lease terms.

Many of the traders, carrying large suitcases and cardboard boxes, were seen buying infant formula, instant noodles and other goods which are in demand on the mainland, Apple Daily reported.

One shop on the third floor appeared to be enjoying brisk business selling such items and even iPhone devices to mainland shoppers. It is just next to the unit that was closed down in April.

According to the lease agreements with tenants, all units in the building can only be used for industrial and/or storage purposes.

The new store identifies itself as a retail distributor of baby food and products, although it is not listed on the Companies Registry.

No money was seen exchanging hands at the shop.

Warehouses on other floors in the plaza were also suspected to be selling goods to mainland parallel traders.

A shop on the ground floor was seen selling retail items such as skincare products, cosmetics and baby products.

Neo Democrats lawmaker Gary Fan said parallel traders have returned in droves to border areas like Sheung Shui despite the cancellation of multiple-entry visit permits for mainland travelers and closure of industrial units for violation of lease terms.

Fan urged the government to closely monitor the situation at Sheung Shui and take prompt action.

Speaking after guesting at a radio show on Saturday, Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Gregory So Kam-leung said the number of visitors from across the border has dropped in view of the protests against parallel traders and the hostile attitude of some locals towards mainland tourists and shoppers.

Leung Kim-shing, spokesman of the North District Parallel Imports Concern Group, said no protests against parallel traders have been launched since the cancellation of multiple-entry visit permits in April.

He assailed So for blaming them for damaging Hong Kong’s reputation instead of the pharmacies and shops that have been doing business with parallel traders.

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DY/JP/CG

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