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China's lodging, catering retail sales up 23.6% in Q1
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11:27, April 20, 2008

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China's accommodation and catering retail sales rose 23.6 percent year on year to 368.73 billion yuan (about 52.68 billion U.S. dollars) in the first quarter of 2008, according to statistics released by the Ministry of Commerce.

The growth was 6.2 percentage points higher than in the same 2007 period, mostly driven up by commodity price increases.

According to the ministry, the sales accounted for 14.4 percent of the nation's total retail sales volume.

Foreign investors set up 168 accommodation and catering companies in the first three months, down 1.8 percent compared with the same period last year, while the contractual foreign funds expanded 82.4 percent to 700 million U.S. dollars.

The ministry predicted that the country's catering retail sales would top 1.47 trillion yuan in 2008, up 19 percent year on year, while the annual per-capita consumption was to reach 1,100 yuan.


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