Well-known Chinese news site Sina (NASDAQ: SINA) recently reported that, not long ago, Walmart closed a fifteen-year-old store in Beijing. It is closing another store in one of Shanghai’s best locations. From 2016 to 2020, in four years, Wal-Mart closed 80 stores in China. Since the beginning of 2021, the number of closed stores has reached 27. In most instances, Wal-Mart’s explanation was that the lease term had expired. Analysts expressed the belief that the cost to operate in China, including such items as the rent and labor, continue to rise. In addition to that, online e-commerce has also had an impact in the retail industry. In recent years, the government has increased its support for domestic companies. International companies are seeing less-than-expected growth. Sina also reported that the Japanese tire giant, Bridgestone, just announced it is closing the Bridgestone (Huizhou) Tire Company in Guangdong Province. In recent years, the fact that Japanese companies have been withdrawing from China has aroused concern. A typical example is Toshiba’s closure of its Dalian factory. There have been reports that the Japanese government is planning to set aside a high budget to help Japanese companies move production lines away from China. Bridgestone saw a 15 percent decline in global sales in 2020. For a while now, the company has been planning to close the Chinese Huizhou factory at the end of 2021 .
(1) Sina, December 11, 2021
(2) Sina, December 7, 2021