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In a shopping festival, Chinese spend a lot of money on electronics and camping gear

Image: Reuters Berita 24 English -  According to e-commerce sites, high-end home appliances and camping gear were among the most sought-afte...

Image: Reuters

Berita 24 English -  According to e-commerce sites, high-end home appliances and camping gear were among the most sought-after purchases during the "618" shopping festival, demonstrating how China's COVID-19 regulations are driving lifestyle shifts.

The event was the first large shopping festival since a series of lockdowns in numerous Chinese cities, including Shanghai, to stem the spread of COVID-19.

Consumption in China has remained low as shoppers in Shanghai and other cities have been confined to their homes. Retail sales fell 6.7 percent in May compared to the same month a year ago, following an 11.1 percent drop in April., the e-commerce behemoth that started the event in 2004, saw sales grow at their weakest rate ever, reaching 379.3 billion yuan ($56.74 billion), indicating how recent lockdowns and declining economic conditions have affected spending.

China's consumption remains sluggish, with retail sales falling 6.7 percent year over year in May, following an 11.1 percent drop the month before.

Despite this, reported a tenfold rise in sales of gaming projectors and 4K high-definition projectors during the event, as well as a fivefold spike in sales of air fryers. Slim refrigerators, which are popular among buyers with small dwellings, witnessed a threefold increase in sales over the previous year.

"As a result of the pandemic, some consumers' living spaces have shrunk, prompting them to consider adding some'sparks' to their life," wrote on its WeChat account on Sunday.

On the first day of Alibaba Group's Tmall marketplace's 618 event, Italian premium coffee machine maker La Marzocco reported a six-fold spike in sales compared to the previous year.

The platforms also reported an increase in sales of camping gear and outdoor equipment, owing to the increased popularity of outdoor activities, particularly among city inhabitants who have been subjected to two years of pandemic restrictions.

Camping-related products sold more than tripled on Tmall during its first round of 618 sales from May 31 to June 3, according to Alibaba. A new 2022 series of fishing reel from Japanese high-end fishing gear maker Daiwa, valued at more than 5,000 yuan, sold out in seconds.

Furthermore, increased health awareness during the pandemic prompted individuals to hoard health items, according to, which cited increased sales of organic milk, high-end teas, and exercise beverages as examples.

(1 US dollar = 6.6871 Chinese yuan)

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