Sep 10

China Watch Blog has learnt that Alibaba.com Ltd, operator of China’s biggest online commerce site for business owners, will audit all exporters that pay the company to market their products after some buyers were defrauded.

AliBaba.com

The company will visit the facilities of all paying members of its China Gold Supplier program over the course of a year, Director of International Marketing Linda Kozlowski was quoted as saying in a Shanghai Daily report at a briefing in Hangzhou, east China’s Zhejiang Province. The “onsite check” will help lower fraud on Alibaba.com’s website, she said.

China daily reported recently that Alibaba.com Corp helped solve 281 fraud cases involving more than $6.6 million, said police in Hangzhou, capital of Zhejiang province.

China’s industry and commerce supervisory body has shut down nearly 1,200 websites for selling fake goods.

Alibaba.com, used by companies, including Wal-Mart Stores Inc, to find suppliers, is also offering product inspection and escrow payment services to help boost protection for buyers, Kozlowski said.

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Sep 10

China Watch Blog has learnt that the growth of retail sales in China was at a slower pace again in August, fueling concerns over whether China can rely on domestic demand to power its economy.

Shanghai Daily reported that retail sales rose 17 percent from a year ago to 1.47 trillion yuan (US$229 billion) last month, the National Bureau of Statistics said. The pace compared with July’s 17.2 percent and June’s 17.7 percent, but was stronger than the 16.9 percent in May.

Taking price effects into account, retail sales may be even weaker than they look. Consumer Price Index, the main gauge of inflation, rose 6.2 percent from a year earlier in August, signaling more expensive goods on the shelves and meaning people have to pay more – which was calculated into retail sales.

“Domestic consumption is expected to be strong this year amid rising wages, but the reality is a disappointment for those who bet that domestic demand can lead China’s economic growth,” Li Maoyu, an analyst at Changjiang Securities Co was quoted as saying.

He said this was possibly because stimulus measures for household appliances and vehicles are being gradually phased out this year, while people don’t feel comfortable enough to increase spending in a slowing economy.

Consumption contributed 47.5 percent to China’s first-half economic output, while investment devoted 53.2 percent, and exports had a negative 0.7 percent input.

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