Spring Fes­ti­val Con­sump­tion Is See­ing Up­grades

China's Foreign Trade (English) - - Industrial Watch - By Tao Wu

Among China’s tra­di­tional fes­ti­vals, Spring Fes­ti­val is the most im­pres­sive fes­ti­val with the rich­est cul­tural con­no­ta­tion. Con­tin­u­ous tap­ping into the cul­tural con­no­ta­tion has greatly driven the emerg­ing and pros­per­ity of the cul­tural con­sump­tion mar­ket dur­ing Spring Fes­ti­val. Com­pared to the past years, the re­cent 2018 Spring Fes­ti­val saw some changes in con­sump­tion trends.

As economic devel­op­ment con­tin­ues, con­sump­tion dur­ing the hol­i­days is evolv­ing from the low­est ba­sic life ne­ces­si­ties to higher level de­mand, Wang Bing­nan, vice min­is­ter of the Min­istry of Com­merce said re­cently.

2018 Spring Fes­ti­val mar­ket is gen­er­ally steady and or­derly

Ac­cord­ing to Wang Bing­nan, in 36 do­mes­tic large and medium-sized ci­ties daily meat sup­ply reached 30,000 tons and veg­etable sup­ply reached 160,000 tons. Com­mod­ity stock of the key re­tail­ers in­creased 10%-15% year-on-year and stock of var­i­ous whole­sale mar­kets and su­per­mar­ket ne­ces­si­ties in­creased 30%-40%, which can be sold for 7-10 days. Three ecom­merce plat­forms like Jing­dong, Tmall and Sun­ing still of­fer smooth de­liv­ery dur­ing Spring Fes­ti­val.

In Fe­bru­ary, aver­age whole­sale price of ed­i­ble agri­cul­tural prod­ucts in the 36 do­mes­tic large and medium-sized ci­ties in- creased 1% over the pre­vi­ous week, al­most the same with the same pe­riod of the pre­vi­ous year. Im­pacted by freez­ing rain and snow, the aver­age price of 30 kinds of veg­eta­bles in­creased 20%. Wang Bing­nan pre­dicts that dur­ing the Spring Fes­ti­val hol­i­day re­tail and cater­ing com­pa­nies reached a sales vol­ume above RMB 900 bil­lion with a year-on-year in­crease of 10%.

“To se­cure mar­ket sup­ply dur­ing Spring Fes­ti­val, we are sup­posed to bring the mar­ket mech­a­nism into full play and to make full use of gov­ern­ment’s con­trol mea­sures to make up mar­ket mal­func­tions,” Wang Bing­nan stressed. We’ll spare no ef­forts in se­cur­ing mar­ket sup­ply in the fol­low­ing three as­pects: first, to en­sure ne­ces­si­ties. Grain, oil, meat, egg, milk and veg­etable that are nec­es­sary for the gen­eral public’s daily life should be se­cured; sec­ond, to en­sure sup­ply. Com­mod­ity sup­ply will be se­cured to avoid out of stock or sharp rise in prices; third, to se­cure the key re­gions. The densely-pop­u­lated large and medium-sized ci­ties, re­gions with se­vere weather as well as Hong Kong and Ma­cao are such key re­gions.

Spring Fes­ti­val con­sump­tion speeds up for up­grad­ing

Speak­ing of the con­sump­tion fea­tures of 2018 Spring Fes­ti­val, Wang Bing­nan re­gards that the big­gest fea­ture is con­sump­tion up­grad­ing in terms of con­sump­tion con­tent, con­sump­tion phi­los­o­phy and con­sump­tion mode. This trend ap­pear in this year’s Spring Fes­ti­val con­sump­tion.

“Con­sump­tion choice val­ues more about qual­ity,” said Wang Bing­nan. In the past, Spring Fes­ti­val meant new clothes, new things and big meals, and this con­sump­tion phi­los­o­phy is to sim­ply have ad­e­quate food and cloth­ing. As the liv­ing stan­dard is im­prov­ing and con­sump­tion con­cept has wit­nessed great changes, con­sump­tion choices value qual­ity and brand in­creas­ingly. This mainly re­flects in three as­pects: healthy food, like or­ganic food, green veg­eta­bles, free-range pork and cage-free eggs and th­ese green and healthy food are con­tin­u­ously de­liv­ered to the gen­eral public’s dining ta­ble; fash­ion­able clothes, like cus­tom­ized gar­ments and im­ported cloth­ing, shoes and hats are quickly en­ter­ing into the house­holds; qual­ity fur­ni­ture, like smart ap­pli­ances, dig­i­tal prod­ucts and en­vi­ron­ment­friendly fur­ni­ture are en­ter­ing into the house­holds.

In the mean­time, con­sump­tion con­tent is di­ver­si­fy­ing. Ac­cord­ing to Wang Bing­nan’s anal­y­sis, in the past, Spring Fes­ti­val con­sump­tion fo­cused on com­modi­ties, like spe­cial pur­chase for Spring Fes­ti­val and gifts for rel­a­tives, most of which were re­lated with food and cloth­ing. Nowa­days, ser­vice

con­sump­tion oc­cu­pies an in­creas­ingly big­ger ra­tio, such as cater­ing, tourism, ed­u­ca­tion, fit­ness, en­ter­tain­ment and cul­ture.

“Or­ders for 2018 New Year’s Eve din­ner were plen­ti­ful, and ta­ble reser­va­tion par­tic­u­larly for some tra­di­tional brands and spe­cial pri­vate rooms reached above 90%. Many take­away plat­forms of­fered de­liv­ery ser­vices for fin­ished prod­ucts and semi-fin­ished prod­ucts. More­over, as China will hold win­ter Olympics in a cou­ple of years, many peo­ple go to ski in the ski re­sorts nearby. It is learned from the ecom­merce plat­forms that sales of ski prod­ucts has in­creased over 30%,” said Wang Bing­nan.

Be­sides, con­sump­tion pat­tern becomes more con­ve­nient. Wang Bing­nan pointed out that rapid devel­op­ment of e-com­merce has brought much con­ve­nience to con­sump­tion dur­ing Spring Fes­ti­val. In the past, peo­ple brought many gifts in big and small bags when go­ing back home to cel­e­brate Spring Fes­ti­val. Nowa­days, many peo­ple pre­fer on­line shop­ping for Spring Fes­ti­val pur­chase and some com­modi­ties ar­rive home even ear­lier than peo­ple. As cross-bor­der e- com­merce de­vel­ops, over­seas qual­ity com­modi­ties may quickly ar­rives at Chi­nese con­sumers’ hands.

To sat­isfy con­sumers’ de­mand for con­sump­tion up­grad­ing and to en­able the gen­eral public to en­joy a qual­ity Spring Fes­ti­val, the busi­ness sys­tem has adopted sev­eral mea­sures. Wang Bing­nan in­tro­duced that in terms of in­creas­ing qual­ity com­modi­ties, com­mer­cial de­part­ments at all lev­els guide the dis­tri­bu­tion com­pa­nies to adapt to the new fea­tures of Spring Fes­ti­val and the new trend of con­sump­tion up­grad­ing, in­crease sup­ply of green, healthy, in­tel­li­gent and fash­ion­able com­modi­ties and to sat­isfy ur­ban and ru­ral res­i­dents’ grow­ing de­mands for qual­ity, per­son­al­ized and di­verse con­sump­tion.

“In the mean­time, var­i­ous e-com­merce plat­forms launch such ac­tiv­i­ties as New Year’s shop­ping car­ni­val and se­lect qual­ity mar­ketable com­modi­ties for Spring Fes­ti­val based on big data,” said Wang Bing­nan. Taobao di­rectly de­liv­ers more than 100 green agri­cul­tural prod­ucts to the large and medium- sized ci­ties, Jing­dong timely de­liv­ers fresh food to the house­holds via en­tire cold chain, and Sun­ing runs pro­mo­tion cam­paign of New Year spe­cial pur­chase jointly with 100 renowned brands.

As for main­tain­ing mar­ket or­der, Wang Bing­nan stressed that the com­mer­cial de­part­ments at all lev­els join hands with rel­e­vant de­part­ments to com­bat in­fringe­ment and coun­ter­feit­ing be­hav­iors of the im­por­tant com­modi­ties, such as food, to­bacco and wine and in the key ar­eas like on­line re­tail, the ru­ral ar­eas and the ru­ralur­ban con­tin­uum, which pu­ri­fies the mar­ket en­vi­ron­ment and en­sures the gen­eral public to en­joy as­sured, se­cure and com­fort­able con­sump­tion dur­ing Spring Fes­ti­val.

Leisure tour has be­come top choice and qual­ity tours gain pop­u­lar­ity

In re­cent years, travel has be­come an in­creas­ingly pop­u­lar way for peo­ple to cel­e­brate Spring Fes­ti­val. In the 2018 Spring Fes­ti­val, the tourism mar­ket ush­ered in a new round of travel peak.

Ac­cord­ing to sur­vey con­ducted by the Data Cen­ter of Na­tional Tourism Ad­min­is­tra­tion, 83% Chi­nese peo­ple sur­veyed would like to travel in the first quar­ter of 2018, of which 48.9% tourists choose to travel dur­ing Spring Fes­ti­val. Based on mar­ket reser­va­tion data, the Cen­ter pre­dicts that the do­mes­tic tourism mar­ket will re­ceive 385 mil­lion tourists, up 12% year-on-year and will re­al­ize tourism rev­enue of RMB 476 bil­lion, up 12.5% year-on-year.

“This year, fam­ily travel has be­come a main­stream,” said Wang Xiaofeng, deputy di­rec­tor of the Na­tional Tourism Ad­min­is­tra­tion. Go­ing to a win­ter re­sort in South China and en­joy­ing snow view in North China are still im­por­tant mo­ti­va­tions for tourists to travel dur­ing Spring Fes­ti­val.

The sur­vey shows that 65.9% tourists choose do­mes­tic medium- and long-dis­tance travel, which oc­cu­pies the big­gest pro­por­tion. Sanya and Harbin are the top two des­ti­na­tions for do­mes­tic travel. Is­land and snow themes are the most pop­u­lar for trav­el­ing. In ad­di­tion, the sec­ond- and third-tier ci­ties are likely to re­ceive a large num­ber of tourists in the com­mer­cial streets, mu­se­ums, theme parks, amuse­ment parks, zoos and tem­ple fairs.

“Leisure tour has be­come a top choice and qual­ity travel gains much pop­u­lar­ity,” said Wang.

The sur­vey shows that hol­i­day leisure has sur­passed scenic sight­see­ing as the top mo­ti­va­tion for trav­el­ling dur­ing Spring Fes­ti­val hol­i­day. Tourists choos­ing hol­i­day leisure ac­counts for 50.5% and that of scenic sight­see­ing 48.9%. Such healthy and leisure trav­els like hot spring tour and health-keep­ing tour at­tract the widest at­ten­tion among tourists. Be­sides, tourists with mo­ti­va­tion of dis­cov­ery and ex­plo­ration ac­count for 36%, which sig­nals that more and more tourists are pur­su­ing tourism qual­ity.

Wang Xiaofeng said that Spring Fes­ti­val hol­i­day is the travel peak for the gen­eral public and lo­cal tourism de­part­ments, based on the fea­tures of Spring Fes­ti­val mar­ket, or­ga­nize all kinds of lively, par­tic­i­pa­tory fes­ti­val ac­tiv­i­ties full of fes­ti­val fla­vor as well as var­i­ous hol­i­day tourism prod­ucts such as folk tour, snow tour, hot spring tour and fit­ness tour to sat­isfy de­mands of tourists at dif­fer­ent lev­els.

“Spring Fes­ti­val con­sump­tion is up­grad­ing and the tourism mar­ket keeps launch­ing new prod­ucts, which shows a new busi­ness type. All the lo­cal gov­ern­ments spare great ef­forts to pro­mote in­te­grated devel­op­ment of the tourism in­dus­try. A batch of new prod­ucts like cul­tural tour, sports tour, health-keep­ing tour, in­dus­trial tour and tech­no­log­i­cal tour are put into the Spring Fes­ti­val mar­ket,” Wang took Zhe­jiang as an ex­am­ple. The beau­ti­ful vil­lages, spe­cial towns and cul­ture streets, such as Ji­ashan cho­co­late spe­cial town, Xin­chang Dali silk in­dus­trial tourism demo base and Hangzhou Mei­ji­awu tea cul­ture street, in­te­grate sight­see­ing and hol­i­day re­lax­ation to­gether and bring tourists a re­lax­ing tour ex­pe­ri­ence.

In ad­di­tion, some at­trac­tions launch new prod­ucts and new busi­ness types like cruise tour, is­land self­driv­ing tour, mo­tor home camp­ing and he­li­copter low-al­ti­tude tour to sat­isfy tourists’ in­di­vid­u­al­ized and di­verse tourism de­mands.

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