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Jan retail sales up 0.9%

The value of total retail sales in January, provisionally estimated at $36.5 billion, rose 0.9% compared with the same month in 2023, the Census & Statistics Department announced today.   After netting out the effect of price changes over the same period, the provisional estimate represents a 1.2% year-on-year decrease.   Of the total retail sales value in January, online sales accounted for 6.5%. Provisionally estimated at $2.4 billion, the value of this segment went down by 20.9% compared with a year earlier.   Noting that retail sales tend to show greater volatility in the first two months of a year due to the timing of the Lunar New Year, the department said the year-on-year comparison of the figures might have been affected to a certain extent.   The value of sales of jewellery, watches and clocks, and valuable gifts increased 25.2% compared with January 2023.   Increases were also recorded in the sales of other consumer goods not elsewhere classified (up 7

3 historic buildings to be revamped

The Development Bureau today announced the three historic buildings included under Batch VII of the Revitalising Historic Buildings Through Partnership Scheme.

 

The bureau invited revitalisation proposals from non-profit-making organisations (NPOs) for one of them - Watervale House, the Former Gordon Hard Camp, in Tuen Mun. The application deadline is noon on April 10, 2024.

 

The other two historic buildings are the Old Lunatic Asylum (Chinese Block) in Sai Ying Pun and No. 23 Coombe Road at the Peak. Relevant application arrangements will be announced in due course.

 

Following a comprehensive review of the revitalisation scheme, the bureau decided to announce all the historic buildings included in the latest batch of the scheme and invite applications in phases.

 

This arrangement aims to expedite the assessment process and facilitate advance planning by interested organisations.

 

Watervale House, the Former Gordon Hard Camp, is a Grade 2 historic building. Built in 1933, it was originally a private residence. In 1959, the British War Department purchased the building and used it as an officers' mess.

 

Guided tours to Watervale House, the Former Gordon Hard Camp, will be arranged for NPOs on January 12, 2024, and a workshop will be held on January 15, 2024, for them to learn about the application procedures and assessment criteria.

 

Interested NPOs can register online from now until January 8, 2024.

 

Following the comprehensive review, the revitalisation scheme allows NPOs with charitable status under section 88 of the Inland Revenue Ordinance to partner with non-charitable organisations to submit applications; and increases the maximum one-off grant to meet the starting costs and operating deficits of the social enterprises for the first two years of operation from $5 million to $6 million.

 

For enquiries, call 2906 1560 or send an email.


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