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Retail sales reach 350b yuan in holiday
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The retail sales of consumer goods in China rose 16 percent year-on-year to almost 350 billion yuan (US$46.7 billion) during the week-long National Day holiday, said sources with the Ministry of Commerce on Sunday.


The retail sales were boosted as more Chinese people travel, gather for family reunions, buy more commodities, and hold weddings during the seven-day holiday known as the "golden week".


Prices of daily necessities maintained stable as there was a sufficient supply in the market, according to the ministry.


Many people in rural areas joined urban dwellers in shopping, traveling and dining out while some city residents waved goodbye to busy urban lives and traveled to suburbs or remote villages to enjoy leisure time.


Sales of garments, home appliances, jewelries and autos rose in Chongqing, Shanghai, Jiangsu, Liaoning, Shanxi, Jilin and Heilongjiang, said the ministry.


In Shanghai alone some 30,000 weddings were held around the holiday period. Famous restaurants were crowded during the holidays, according to surveys, said the ministry.


China has three Golden Week holidays every year, including the Spring Festival holiday, May 1 Labor Day holiday and October 1 National Day holiday.


The Chinese government launched Golden Week holidays in 1999, in the hope of encouraging people to spend more for the benefit of economic growth.


In 2006, the retail sales of China's consumer goods rose 14.5 percent over that in 2005 to 300 billion yuan during the National Day holiday.


(Xinhua News Agency October 8, 2007)


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