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Shock confirmation – retail giant will have China op online this month.

Myer’s much speculated move to China is in full swing, they have just confirmed. 

In its annual report it stated:  “we are progressing well in establishing our global sourcing offices in Shanghai and Hong Kong, including our new Hong Kong-based internet site and fulfilment facilities”.

And now the retail giant, headed by Bernie Brooks told SmartCompany today that they to have the new website running out of China up and running by the end of this month. 

This was in order to “strengthen our direct sourcing capabilities,” said Brookes although in reality it will allow them to avoid the 10% GST levy on goods up to $1,000, charged on domestic goods sold here.

This comes as a major surprise since nothing was heard about the move since it was first proposed by Myer last December in the GST furore kicked up by retailers including David Jones, Solomon Lew’s Just Group and other major names on the high street.

Harvey Norman also cited a similar Asian move following what they branded was the government unfair treatment of domestic retailers compared to foreign counterparts, since they refused to levy a similar GST tax on foreign goods bought online under $1000. 

This, was hurting their sales figures, they said.  
 

China – to be or not to be?

“I spoke to our online man this morning, and I said why can’t we do
that? And he said there is no reason we can’t do that at all,” saig Gerry Harvey, Chairman of Harvey Norman following Myer’s proposed China move.   

Mr Harvey said his offshore website would most likely not sell large whitegoods, such as washing machines or televisions, but did cite consumer electronics goods as a key part of the product portfolio offered by Harvey Norman from their China based web site, if it went ahead.

 

Despite Gerry Harvey previously stating “We may even beat Myer to getting our shop up,” this has clearly not been the case, although once Myer has moved it certainly looks more likely other will quickly follow suit.      

Gerry Harvey could not be reached this afternoon for comment but no doubt he is mulling over the whole debacle back at head office.                  

Myer also this week announced a profit downgrade citing floods, poor trading conditions and rising rates.  

JB Hi Fi sung a completely different tune however revelling in soaring online sales figures, which jumped  35%, pushing profits up 16% .

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