1st June 2023 – (Hong Kong) The Census and Statistics Department (C&SD) has released the latest figures on retail sales in Hong Kong, revealing that the value of total retail sales in April 2023 was provisionally estimated at $34.7 billion, indicating a 15.0% increase compared to the same month in 2022. The revised estimate of the value of total retail sales in March 2023 also showed an increase of 40.8% compared to the previous year. For the first four months of 2023 taken together, it was provisionally estimated that the value of total retail sales increased by 21.7% compared to the same period in 2022.
Online sales accounted for 6.4% of total retail sales value in April 2023, with the value of online retail sales in that month provisionally estimated at $2.2 billion. This figure decreased by 11.9% compared to the same month in 2022. For the first four months of 2023, it was provisionally estimated that the value of online retail sales decreased by 6.9% compared to the same period in 2022.
After netting out the effect of price changes over the same period, the provisional estimate of the volume of total retail sales in April 2023 increased by 13.3% compared to a year earlier. The revised estimate of the volume of totalretail sales in March 2023 increased by 39.3% compared to the previous year. For the first four months of 2023 taken together, the provisional estimate of the total retail sales increased by 19.9% in volume compared to the same period in 2022.
Analyzing the figures by broad type of retail outlet, the sales of jewellery, watches, clocks, and valuable gifts saw the highest increase in value, at 75.2%. Other consumer goods not elsewhere classified saw an increase of 17.8%, followed by wearing apparel at 38.6%, and food, alcoholic drinks, and tobacco at 3.9%. Commodities in department stores increased by 14.0%, while medicines and cosmetics saw a 34.8% increase, and motor vehicles and parts increased by 18.4%. Footwear, allied products, and other clothing accessories saw a 26.2% increase, followed by Chinese drugs and herbs at 7.3%, books, newspapers, stationery, and gifts at 29.9%, and optical shops at 16.6%.
On the other hand, the value of sales of commodities in supermarkets decreased by 7.9% in April 2023 compared to the previous year. Sales of electrical goods and other consumer durable goods not elsewhere classified saw a 13.1% decrease in value, followed by fuels at 10.2%, and furniture and fixtures at 26.0%. A government spokesman commented on the figures, stating that the increase in retail sales in April 2023 is a result of the continued improvement in consumption sentiment and visitor arrivals. The spokesman also noted that the revival of inbound tourism and local consumption demand should continue to support the retail sector’s performance. The disbursement of consumption vouchers is expected to provide further support.