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Alibaba is finding new challenges in entering the Hong Kong market

Flood of fake, shoddy goods and locals' preference for real stores limit online appeal

Ant Financial, Alibaba's financial unit, held an event to introduce Alipay to retailers in Hong Kong. (Photo by Yasuo Awai)

HONG KONG Having established a dominant position in its home market, Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding is now looking to boost its presence in Hong Kong, rolling out its Tmall retail website for local consumers and releasing a version of its Alipay mobile payment service in Hong Kong dollars.

But Alibaba faces more than a few hurdles, not least because Hong Kong shoppers remain largely suspicious of the quality of goods and services provided by mainland-based companies. E-commerce is also still less prevalent in the territory than in other Asian markets. If Alibaba can succeed in establishing a stronger presence against these odds, it will be an important step toward achieving its global ambitions.

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