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Q1 commercial sales up over 2 percent

TAIPEI--Sales generated by the local commercial sector for the first quarter of this year rose more than 2 percent from a year earlier on the back of a recovery in domestic commercial activity, according the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) said Thursday.

The MOEA cited statistics showing that local commercial revenue in the three-month period totaled NT$3.47 trillion (US$114.5 billion), up 2.1 percent year-on-year.

Commercial sales comprise revenue generated by the wholesale, retail and restaurant businesses.

Sales in the wholesale sector during the January-March period rose 1.5 percent from a year earlier to about NT$2.40 trillion, while revenue in the retail sector rose 3.2 percent to NT$966.7 billion, the statistics show.

Meanwhile, sales generated by the restaurant business gained 5.3 percent from a year earlier to NT$106.2 billion, the ministry said.

In March alone, local commercial sales hit some NT$1.19 trillion, up 1.5 percent from a year earlier and also up 13.4 percent from the previous month.

In the wholesale sector, the largest contributor to commercial sales overall, revenue in the month rose 0.3 percent from a year earlier and also grew 17.7 percent from a month earlier to NT$838.4 billion.

The MOEA said the revenue increase in the wholesale sector resulted from strong buying in cars and an increase in petrochemical shipments in the month, while food and clothing sales fell in the same period.

Sales in the retail sector for March rose 4.6 percent from a year earlier and gained 4.9 percent from a month earlier to NT$312.5 billion, while revenue in the restaurant business totaled NT$34.1 billion, up 4.0 percent year-on-year but down 1.9 percent month-on-month, the ministry said.

The ministry said commercial sales for April could continue to grow as buying in department stores, convenience stores and hyper markets was boosted by several public holidays, such as Children's Day.

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