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Last year worst in 30+ years for Malaysian retailers

Malaysia’s hope for recovery in the retail industry has been shattered, recording the worst performance since 1987 last year, according to Retail Group Malaysia (RGM).

Despite the signs of recovery since the end of last year, Malaysia’s retail industry is again facing the risk of downturn as the country’s Covid-19 cases have jumped to record highs. 

According to RGM, since the movement control order (MCO) 3.0 was reimposed in April, a number of retailers were badly affected, especially those in shopping centres. However, the hope for bouncebackability after that was dashed as the country entered a nationwide “total lockdown” last month. 

“New forecasts cannot be made at this current time due to the uncertainties in the Covid-19 developments and lockdown restrictions within Malaysia,” said RGM.

During the first three months of this year, Malaysia’s retail sales dropped 9.9 per cent year on year. However, at the same time, the country saw an increase in prices across retail sub-sectors, including food and non-alcoholic beverages and miscellaneous goods and services. 

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