Hainan’s duty-free shops rake in $4.6b
By Nadeem Xu
HAINAN, China: Sales in four offshore duty-free shops in South China’s island province of Hainan have exceeded 30 billion yuan (US$4.6 billion) so far this year, the Hainan provincial department of commerce says.
Between January 1 and December 14, duty-free sales at the locations surpassed 25 billion yuan and sales of taxed goods reached about 5 billion yuan, both doubling last year’s figures.
Starting on July 1, Hainan increased its annual tax-free shopping quota from 30,000 yuan to 100,000 yuan per person. The island province has used policy upgrades to boost its economy, with its daily duty-free sales topping 120 million yuan, an increase of more than 200% year-on-year.
By the end of 2020, the duty-free shops are expected to net about 31.5 billion yuan in sales for the year.
Hainan has two duty-free shops in its capital city of Haikou, one in Qionghai and one in its popular resort city of Sanya.
Moon samples
The return capsule of China’s Chang’e-5 probe touched down on Earth early on Thursday, bringing back the country’s first samples collected from the Moon, as well as the world’s freshest lunar samples in more than 40 years.
The spacecraft landed in Siziwang Banner, north China’s Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, at 1.59AM (Beijing Time), according to the China National Space Administration (CNSA).
The recovery team will make initial processing of the capsule and then fly it to Beijing where it will be opened for technicians to remove the container holding lunar samples.
The re-entry and landing started about 1AM when mission controllers uploaded high-accuracy navigation data to the orbiter-reentry capsule combination as it was traveling around the Earth.
Covid-19 vaccines
China’s Covid-19 vaccine development has entered the “final sprint,” with the country preparing for the mass production of vaccines, the National Health Commission says.
China has adopted five technological approaches in developing Covid-19 vaccines, with 15 vaccines entering clinical trials, of which five are undergoing phase-3 clinical trials.
The five include two inactivated vaccines developed by the China National Biotec Group affiliated to Sinopharm, an inactivated vaccine developed by Sinovac Biotech, an adenovirus vector vaccine developed by the Academy of Military Sciences and CanSino Biologics Inc, and a recombinant sub-unit vaccine jointly developed by Anhui Zhifei Longcom Biopharmaceutical Co Ltd and the Institute of Microbiology under the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
Best-performing cities
Lanzhou, the capital of China’s Gansu Province and a crucial link in China’s One Belt, One Road initiative, is China’s best-performing city in 2020, according to the Milken Institute’s sixth edition of its annual Best-Performing Cities China report.