of China’s overabundant shopping malls will close down in five years and
the rest will have to transform to survive, according to a report by the
Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.
Shopping centers are rapidly losing appeal to consumers in many cities
due to their lack of competitive strengths, the report said. Qingdao in
East China’s Shandong Province, Chongqing Municipality, and the
northeastern city of Dalian in Liaoning Province all reported closures
of large shopping centers at the end of August.
The report said that one-third of the malls will change into wholesale
or retail marketplaces, with an emphasis on customer experiences.
Another third will have to integrate online shopping with
Among the world’s top 20 cities building large shopping malls, 13 are
located in China. In the southwestern city of Chengdu alone, shopping
centers under construction total 3.2 million square meters, the
second-most in China after the financial hub of Shanghai.
Data shows that shopping mall space per person in China’s second and
third-tier cities has reached 2 square meters, much larger than 1.5
square meters in Hong Kong or 1 square meter in Japan and South Korea.
In addition to oversupplied space, another fatal flaw is that many
shopping malls are homogenous, often with little difference between one
Jing Linbo, director of the Chinese Evaluation Center for Humanities and
Social Sciences, said shopping malls need to reform their business
models to compete with e-commerce.Jing also said the key to survival
lies in diversified competition and value-added services to customers.