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RFA Chinese: 460,000 Restaurants in China Closed in First Quarter

Radio Free Asia (RFA) Chinese Edition recently reported on the latest data from the Chinese National Bureau of Statistics, showing that around 460,000 Chinese restaurants were deregistered or had their licenses revoked in the first quarter of this year, a year-over-year increase in restaurant closures of approximately 230 percent. Among the closed restaurants, 180,000 closed in March alone. People in the industry lamented that business has become increasingly difficult. China’s consumer market has continued to decline in the post-COVID-19 era, and a wave of business closures has spread from the manufacturing and international trade sectors to the restaurants industry.

A consumer said in an interview with RFA that many residents in her city could not find jobs and have lost their sources of income; they are cutting back on food and clothing expenses. She also said that people from all walks of life are experiencing the current recession. Prospects now are not particularly good, and people don’t dare to spend their money. Thus, China’s day-to-day consumption patterns have changed. People don’t see hope, nor can they see a future.

The recession in the restaurant business is the most direct manifestation of the reduction in the income of Chinese residents – they are not eating out. Some domestic experts suggested that restaurant owners follow the lead of the green energy automobile industry – reduce prices and go overseas.

Source: RFA Chinese, April 23, 2024