Chinese consumers spent about RMB 821 billion ($127 billion) on shopping and wine and dine during this year’s Spring Festival holiday, an increase from 2020 but still below the amount in 2019, which was over RMB 1 trillion, according to government data, reported the South China Morning Post.
China has been battling Covid-19 outbreaks in a number of provinces this year. As a result, the annual Lunar New Year mass migration home and consumption were disrupted as health authorities required people from high- and medium-risk areas to spend the holiday where they worked or studied, and avoid large gatherings or unnecessary travel, said the SCMP.
The 2021 figure, released on Wednesday by China’s Ministry of Commerce, also revealed the hit to last year’s holiday spending, as statistics for that period were not published last year. Consumption for the holiday in 2021 saw a 28.7% increase from 2020, which meant last year’s spending stood at about RMB 638 billion.
“2020 was a highly unusual year that saw complicated domestic and international macro-environments, especially due to the serious impact from Covid-19,” said a January 2021 report by the Ministry of Commerce that evaluated consumption in the last year.