Hong Kong retailers in battle against landlords over rent to survive virus, protest


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Hong Kong retailers in battle against landlords over rent to survive virus, protest

A raft of retailers in the once-cherished Asian economic centrepiece, Hong Kong, that lost its economic HubSpot status last year following nearly an eight-month long pro-democracy anti-government protest, had recently been locked with a rare battle with the city’s nefariously unyielding landlords for a bigger and long-term rent-cut, as businesses in Hong Kong have been grappling with a doubled edged sword of a crippling coronavirus outbreak alongside months of violent protests which had peaked in December last year following death a student amid demonstrations.

As a matter of fact, contemplating the extent of pressure their businesses were going through, retailers, both China’s home-grown and multinational, had been pressing hard to temporarily lower the rents of leases, while last week roughly 50 brands had arranged a strike and shut down more than 200 shops across premium shopping malls in the city for a day as part of their demonstration to deduce rents.

Meanwhile, referring to Hong Kong’s fragile economy that lost much of its shine last year as large investors had swayed their assets either in Singapore or mainland China, the President and CEO of Bluebell Group, Ashley Micklewright said on Thursday (February 27th), “A 50% reduction is obviously nice to have...but when you’re not taking in enough to cover salaries, our main interest is to look after our staff, and of course to look after the long-term viability of our business. ”