ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
Thai retailers are upbeat
Thailand's retail business will grow at a double-digit rate next year with department stores gaining the most benefit, says the Development of Thai Capital Retailers Association (DTRA). The recovery of the country's economy, increases in minimum wages and salaries for civil servants and politicians, and the general election would get more money circulating in 2011. He said people will resume spending on luxury products, so department stores should see double-digit sales growth. Product categories that are "hot" include cosmetics, skincare, fashions and technology products.
A recent survey by the market research firm Synovate also found that 43.1 percent of Bangkok's affluent consumers reported substantial increases in luxury product purchases. The company said the findings defied expectations given the fluctuating fortunes of the greater Thai economy and consumer confidence.
"It seems that Bangkok's big spenders will not stop acquiring in good times or bad. They are the mainstay for many brands whatever the market conditions," said Synovate managing director Steven Britton.
As well, people in the provinces have been earning more income from the increasing prices of agricultural products. The northeast is benefiting from increasing trade and commercial links with southern China, creating more income opportunities.
CP All plans to open 450 to 500 new 7-Eleven outlets next year, bringing its total to 6,200 or 6,250. That will create about 5,000 new jobs.
At the same time, the company will officially open its first "green" store next year. Currently, it has changed electrical equipment in all 7-Eleven stores to reduce the energy consumption by 30 percent. The company will now go a step further by finding eco-friendly construction materials to build its stores.
It also plans to spend 500 million baht to build new distribution centres in Chiang Mai next year to serve its 500 stores in the north.
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