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Dubai Duty Free sales up 21% in Q1

Perfumes and gold continued to be the top selling items
McLoughlin: Consumers are spending more.
McLoughlin: Consumers are spending more.

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Dubai Duty Free sales increased 21 percent in the first quarter of 2010, compared to the same period the previous year, official figures reveal.

The retailer said the increase revealed a “return of consumer confidence” following a difficult 2009 amid the global financial crisis.

Sales reached a total of AED 1.1bn (US $307mn) between January and March, the firm said in a statement on Thursday.

"Our year end sales in 2009 showed an increase of 3.76 percent, which we were pleased with. However, 2009 was a difficult year for all retailers and for many it was a time to take stock,” said Colm McLoughlin, Dubai Duty Free managing director.

"From the second half of last year and the first quarter of 2010, we have definitely seen an increase in consumer spending across all categories, including the high-end products."

Perfumes and gold continued to be the top selling items in duty free. Perfume sales reached AED 150mn ($41.7mn), an increase of 23 percent from last year, while gold sales rose 22 percent to AED123mn ($34mn).

Confectionary sales also grew by 20 percent to AED87mn ($24mn), and sale of electronic goods grew by 15 percent to AED80mn ($22mn).

Watch and clock sales also rose by 41 percent, the statement said.

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