TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Taiwan's domestic retail trade for the month of July reached a new high of NT$350 billion (US$11.41 billion) this year, off the back of strong sales relating to the Ghost Festival, the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA, 經濟部) said on Aug. 23.
Cumulative retail sales from January-July were also higher this year, when compared to last, MOEA said.
Strong growth in retail sales last month are largely attributed to increases to the price of petroleum, as well as continued e-commerce growth. A recent report by FedEx found that e-commerce revenue for Taiwan's small and medium sized businesses increased by 50 percent over the past two years.
In July, the retail industry expanded by 3.2% in annual terms, marking six consecutive months of higher retail sales vis-à-vis 2017.
Taiwan's petroleum retailers saw 2.43 percent year-on-year growth in July 2018, when compared to July 2017, which was largely due to higher crude oil prices. Convenience stores saw 8.5 percent growth, due to summer promotional products. E-commerce companies saw 8.3 percent growth, as demand for electronics remains strong.
MOEA believes that retail growth in August will be driven by the food and beverage industry, as well as sales relating to Father's Day and Qixi Festival (also known as Chinese Valentine's day). MOEA added that retail growth in August may be balanced out by cooling of automotive sales, as the market enters a traditional lul.