Date
29 May 2017
High warehousing costs are a dampener for online retailers, says Carthen Lam of FingerShopping.com. Photo: HKEJ
High warehousing costs are a dampener for online retailers, says Carthen Lam of FingerShopping.com. Photo: HKEJ

Govt urged to take action to promote e-tailing

The government must focus on resolving some issues that are holding back the development of the e-commerce sector in Hong Kong, industry experts say.

High costs involved in setting up warehouses is serving as a dampener for firms which wish to engage in e-tailing, said Andy Wong, PricewaterhouseCoopers’ director for China consulting services. 

The logistics costs, coupled with the high wages in the city, is discouraging potential entrants in the e-commerce space, he told the Hong Kong Economic Journal.   

Despite having very smartphone penetration rate and wide broadband coverage, Hong Kong is lagging in the development of e-tailing.

The online channel accounts for just 2 to 3 percent of Hong Kong’s total retail sales, way below that seen in places such as Singapore and South Korea.

Carthen Lam, a project manager at FingerShopping.com, an online platform operated by Convenience Retail Asia Ltd. (00831.HK), said it may take another five to 10 years for the city to grow its online shopping sector.

Convenience Retail is in talks with vendors for cooperation opportunities in a bid to bring down logistics and storage costs.

If the costs are brought down, more sales can be directed to online platforms, Lam said.

[Chinese version中文版]

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