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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

Govt sought remedies over sit-out

(To watch the full media session with sign language interpretation, click here.)


Secretary for Culture, Sports & Tourism Kevin Yeung said today that the Government repeatedly liaised with Tatler Asia on Lionel Messi’s participation in the football match between the Hong Kong team and Inter Miami CF yesterday, and had sought remedies after the Argentinian player sat out the match.


Stressing that the Government, in common with many football fans, was deeply disappointed with yesterday’s turn of events, Mr Yeung said: “One of the key terms of our funding agreement with Tatler Asia was for Messi to participate in the match for at least 45 minutes, subject to fitness and safety considerations.”


The event, named Tatler XFEST Hong Kong and organised by Tatler Asia, was awarded “M” Mark status by the Major Sports Events Committee, which also provided a matching grant of $15 million and a further grant of $1 million for the venue.


Mr Yeung also told reporters that before the match began Tatler Asia reaffirmed to the Government that Messi would play in the second half.


“When the second half began without Messi, we immediately followed up with the organiser, Tatler Asia, requesting them to liaise with Inter Miami CF to arrange for Messi to play as soon as possible, but we were later informed by Tatler Asia that Messi could not play due to injury.”


About 10 minutes before the match ended, the organiser finally confirmed that Messi would not be playing in it.


“We therefore immediately requested for them to explore other remedies, such as Messi appearing on the field to interact with his fans, and receiving the trophy.


“Unfortunately, as you all saw, this did not work out.”


He added that Tatler Asia should explain to the public the details of what had occurred.


Looking forward, he said the Government will work with the Major Sports Events Committee to enhance the “M” Mark system, and persist in its efforts to enable more major events to be held in Hong Kong.

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