China expected to crack down on overseas shopping agents

Image via Flickr
A shopping mall in Beijing. Image via Flickr.

According to the South China Morning Post, the Chinese government is considering more severe measures against overseas shopping agents. This may take the form of legal punishment and the policies are expected to be launched soon, says an insider.

Overseas shopping agents, called daigou, import goods like baby formula, cosmetics, and luxury handbags to sell in the mainland at a profit, often avoiding import taxes. This move is a way for the Chinese government to boost domestic consumption.

According to the Ministry of Commerce, import sales through e-commerce channels have increased 59% since last year to RMB 476 billion (USD 74 billion). Bain & Co.’s 2014 China Luxury Market Study found that 70% of luxury goods bought by Chinese were bought abroad or through daigou agencies, with Korea and Japan being top destinations.

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