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Global retailers boost shopping appeal

CHINA climbed four positions to be the world's sixth most popular retail market in 2008 while the United Kingdom retained its top spot, the world's largest commercial real estate services provider said yesterday.

The number of international retailers which have a presence in China rose to 42 percent last year from 37 percent a year earlier, according to the latest annual retail research by CB Richard Ellis which surveyed 280 top retailers in 67 countries.

While a global economic slowdown and a rapid weakening in sentiment has made some retailers scale back their expansion into some countries, most have continued to grow their global footprint during the past 12 months. More than 40 percent of all new openings last year took place outside their home region, according to the research.

Across the globe, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Turkey and Canada made significant moves up the global hierarchy, mainly due to rising local consumer affluence and the opening of major new shopping centers, according to the report.

At city level, London was the most international retail city with 60 percent of the world's top retailers, followed by Paris with 49 percent and New York with 47 percent, the report said.

Two Chinese cities made it to the world's top 15 retail spots last year, with Beijing at No. 15 with 36 percent of global retailers present while Hong Kong was ranked 13th with 37 percent of them opening shops there.


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