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September 10, 2009

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Shopping placed in the fast lane

IT'S that time of the year again. Yes, shop till you drop.

The annual Shanghai Shopping Festival starts on Saturday in conjunction with the city's tourism festival.

The shopping event lasts two days longer, winding up on October 8.

More than 2,000 businesses nationwide will participate in the shopping carnival and present more than 500 events covering food, fashion, leisure, entertainment and, of course, tourism.

More than 200,000 city locations across the city will stock up for the big event.

And the Internet is on the case.

Fifteen leading B2C Websites have joined the event for the first time to offer online shopping, including, consumer electrical appliance seller and beauty and health care retailer

As much as 37.5 million yuan (US$5.49 million) worth of coupons valued at 1,000 yuan each will be handed out to reward online shoppers.

Business hours in downtown areas, including Xujiahui, Nanjing Road E. and Huaihai Road M, will be extended to midnight during the eight-day National Holiday ending on October 8, with many promotions.

Retail sales during the shopping festival jumped 18.7 percent to a record 25.6 billion yuan in 2007 and eclipsed that by 19.5 percent to 30.6 billion yuan last year.

The festival was a key measure to boost consumption, the Shanghai Municipal Commission of Commerce said.


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