Consumer Fair sees low biz

National 1 minute, 48 seconds

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

BUSINESS at the 17th Consumer Fair was significantly lower compared to previous fairs, suggesting that purchasing power among Bruneians has fallen, said participating vendors.

Several vendors interviewed by The Brunei Times said this yesterday, during the last day of the fair at the International Convention Centre in Berakas.

Ferdie, retail manager at Intracorp (B) Sdn Bhd, electronics chain store and furniture retailer, said that “last year’s market was different compared to this year”.

“I think all of us know that the market situation is quite tough, it is true that purchasing power among Bruneians has gone down.

“For this consumer fair, the crowd is huge but the purchasing power isn’t. That’s the reality of the situation,” he said.

Kevin Lim, general manager at Vicom Enterprise, a mobile phone distributor, said it was quite noticeable that “buying power has actually dropped tremendously” compared to their previous sales records. “We were here last year and sales was okay then. This year, we can really see the difference as there are less sales,” Lim said.

Lim acknowledged that there were more visitors this year but said that were “buying less” compared to last year.

“People don’t really spend money as much anymore. Most of them just come to the fair, walk around and have a look,” he said.

Meanwhile, City Hair Studio representative Peggie Kiew said that sales of hair products and hair treatment packages at this fair were “maybe about half” of that compared to last year’s fair.

“Sales were quite good in the January fair last year, our booth’s spot was not as favourable as this year’s, but business was still better last year,” she said.

Kiew added that business at the hair salon had gone down as well.

“It’s really bad and I guess some of it has to do with how the Malaysian currency has gone up and down so a lot of people are going to Malaysia to buy their hair products,” she said.

However, Kiew said that it was likely that the hair salon would still be participating in future editions of the Consumer Fair.

The Brunei Times