Wed, Jan 18, 2006 - Page 10 News List

Retail complexes need to offer new mix

By Jackie Lin  /  STAFF REPORTER

Establishing retail complexes that combine hotels and offices should be the trend when the local retail market matures, Jones Lang LaSalle Taiwan said yesterday.

Since 2000, Taiwan's annual retail sales growth has posted stable growth of between 5 and 7 percent except in 2003 when SARS hit. Total sales for 2004 in malls, department stores, hypermarkets and convenience store chains reached NT$690 billion (US$21.6 billion).

In a report released yesterday, Jones Lang LaSalle said that nearly 20 department stores and mega shopping centers are expected to be launched through 2008, outpacing the growth of hypermarkets.

This year alone, five retail areas will be opened, including one in Taipei, three in Kaohsiung and one in Chiayi. Their total retail space will account for 179,140 ping (592,198m2), a new high in recent years, said Mara Wang (王香完), the company's head of retail services.

With only one shopping area to be inaugurated next year, the market will see fierce competition in 2008 when 11 projects, or 174,850 ping in retail space, are completed.

"They need to achieve better market segmentation by developing different retail forms, such as increasing the proportion of entertainment facilities and decreasing that of retail," Wang said, citing a development site to the north of the Taipei Main Station, which will house a hotel, offices and department stores.

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