Hong Kong’s two main toy industry groups have said that sales of Chinese-made toys will be flat next year due to the recession in the US and Europe, the South China Morning Post reported. The Toys Manufacturers’ Association and the Hong Kong Toys Council said they expected to meet their target of 3% growth for this year, but that poor demand would keep sales level in 2009. Lawrence Chan, chairman of the Hong Kong Toys Council, said the industry has been caught in an 18-month "deep winter" since consolidation began in the summer of 2007, which he hopes will be followed by a thaw. Hong Kong investors account for about one-third of China’s 4,000 toymakers, which have been hit this year by rising costs, falling orders, product safety-related recalls and tighter safety regulations.
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