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People's Daily Online>>China Business

Chinese celebrate Christmas with Oriental twist

(Xinhua)

13:43, December 19, 2011

A promotional advertisement in one hand and a leather boot in the other, a sales clerk solicits customers at a department store in Shanghai, east China, Dec. 10, 2011. The oncoming Christmas and New Year's Day bode well for retail business in many Chinese cities such as Shanghai, where consumers start to benefit from various sales promotions in department stores and shopping centers. (Xinhua/Pei Xin)

BEIJING, Dec. 19 (Xinhuanet) -- Christmas is very much a product of commercial marketing in the west. Businessmen used to do the same things to promote Valentine's Day and Mother's Day.

Chinese are festival fans. Many of them, the young in particular, enjoy Christmas, but with an Oriental wisdom or twist. They see it as an occasion for shopping spree and fun-seeking.

In Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Xi'an and even second-tier Chinese cities, Christmas has become an important celebration for urbanites. Along with New Year's Day and the Chinese Lunar New Year, Christmas is a great joy for both Chinese and local foreigners. As an unofficial Chinese festival, Christmas, is celebrated mostly by young people.

Cai Sujian, president of China Luxury Institute, said Chinese buyers are gaining a more global perspective and open attitude toward foreign cultures, especially among the urban youth born in the 1980s and 1990s.

Zhao Qing, 28, recently bought her boyfriend a 2,000-yuan Montblanc pen as a birthday and Christmas gift.

"I heard that Montblanc has been in Taiyuan for ten years. It has a good reputation," said Zhao, who earns just around 2,000 yuan a month in a government-affiliated institution in Shanxi.

"China's rising consumption power is changing the global luxury market landscape," Cai said, noting that while luxury brands saw no growth in European markets amid the global meltdown and euro zone debt woes, China's strong purchasing power assures robust growth.

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