China to have 4,000 shopping centres by 2015

shopping-centreBeijing, July 4 : China is all set to witness the number of its shopping centres reaching 4,000 by 2015, an official with the China Chain Store & Franchise Association (CCSFA) said Thursday.

The country's retail chain stores improve management efficiency, expand operation channels and integrate online and offline business models, Xinhua reported.

According to the statistics of the CCSFA, the country's official representative of retailing and franchise industry, there were 3,000 shopping centres across the country in 2012, with a gross floor area of 200 million square metres.

Besides large shopping centres, convenience stores also reported fast expansion last year. The country's 20 major convenience store chains registered 28 per cent sales growth, and the number of convenience stores increased 14 per cent nationwide in 2012.

Consumption demand has dropped on the back of a decelerating economy and intensifying competition, causing oversupply in some local markets, said Guo Geping, chairwoman of the CCSFA.

The competitive edge of convenience stores will be sharpened with the development of instant foods and logistics services for online shopping, she added.

The country's department stores were hit by rising costs and a bustling online retailing sector, so the most urgent task is transforming business models to reduce costs and improve customer experience, said Guo.

China's largest 100 chain stores realised sales of 1.87 trillion yuan ($302 billion) in 2012, up 10.8 per cent, according to year on year data.(IANS)