Foreigners deplete stocks in retail as currency appreciate­s

Dünya Executive - - BUSINESS - IREM CETINGOZ

The more than 20 percent rise in the foreign exchange last week has led a vast number of tourists to shopping centers. Sinan Oncel, the United Brands Associatio­n (BMD) Chairman, said that if the situation continues this way, foreigners will deplete the current stock but the same goods will not be produced with the same prices.

Foreign credit card spending suggests a serious increase in retail shopping due to the currency advantages and increasing num- ber of tourists, Oncel noted. In some shopping malls in Istanbul and at some tourist attraction­s, shopping by foreigners constitute­d the 40-50 percent of the turnover at shops especially in the medium and luxury segments.

In line with the exchange advantage and the seasonal discount, this ratio is expected to increase further in the coming days, he added.

200 euro dress s now 100 euro

“Foreigners are shopping in almost every category,” Oncel said, adding that tourists can easily see the price difference in imported luxury segment products, especially mobile phones and other electronic products such as perfumes, shirts and sports shoes. “For example, an article of clothing which is sold in Europe for 200 euros is sold for 100 euros in Turkey. Therefore, tourists will want to take this advantage,” he said.

Tourists from Gulf countries like Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait contribute most to retail shopping in Turkey. However, Oncel noted that recently Chinese tourists are doing wholesale shopping in the luxury sector.

If the situation continues, the shops on main streets and shopping malls will have the opportunit­y to finish their stocks. “This is the positive side, but the retailer will not be able to sell the same product at the same price and the costs will increase slightly. It is difficult to predict because manufactur­ers have not been able to price with the Turkish lira over the last few days.”

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