Chinese Retail Industry Booms, U.S. Retailers Urged President To End Trade War

Container Ships
FILE PHOTO: Containers are seen unloaded from the Maersk's Triple-E giant container ship Maersk Majestic, one of the world's largest container ships, at the Yangshan Deep Water Port, part of the Shanghai Free Trade Zone, in Shanghai, China, September 24, 2016. (Photo: REUTERS/Aly Song/File Photo GLOBAL BUSINESS WEEK AHEAD)

The retailing industry in China continued its growth, driven by small businesses such as convenience stores, despite the exchange of tariffs between China and the United States. In the United States, more than 170 shoe retailers sent a letter to the White House that begs President Donald Trump to end the raising tariffs on footwear imported from China.

China Daily reported that convenience stores in China continued growth-boosting their momentum in terms of revenue and the number of brick-and-mortar stores last year. China Chain Store and Franchise Association's China Urban Convenience Store Index reflected that the number of convenience outlets added 11,944 new stores, an increase of 18 percent, last year.

Convenience stores make up 62 percent of China's total number. The growth in convenience stores is mainly because of franchises. The biggest contributors in convenience store growth are the Taiyuan, Shanxi province, Changsha, Hunan province, Xiamen, Fujian province, Chengdu, Sichuan province and Dongguan, Guangdong province.

Peipei Liang, secretary general of the China Chain Store& Franchise Association, said that there is a big potential for more regional players to deepen their market penetration. He also said that the acceleration of the number of smaller stores is the key driver for the growth of brick-and-mortar stores in the retail industry nationwide.

In the United States, retailers, including Nike, Under Armour, Adidas, Foot Locker, Ugg, and Off Broadway Shoe Warehouse wrote a letter to the White House urging President Donald Trump to end the tariffs on imported footwear from China.

The letter came after the Trump administration imposed 2 percent duties on $ 300 billion in Chinese goods. The new list of products included almost everything from sneakers to sandals, golf shoes, rain boots, and ski shoes.

The Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America (FDRA), said that shoe shoppers might lose more than $7 billion each year because of the tariffs. The FDRA said that with the 25% tariff, the price of a popular type of canvas "skate" sneaker will increase from $49.99 to $65.57. The trade organization also said that a typical hunting boot will reach $248.56 from $190 because of the tariffs.

The letter emphasized that while United States tariffs on all consumer goods average just 1.9 percent, they average 11.3 percent for footwear and reach rates as high as 67.5 percent. It also noted that adding a 25 percent tax increase on top of these tariffs would mean some working American families could pay a nearly 100 percent duty on their shoes.

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