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China's duty-free champion looks to go abroad via HKEX

Bolstered by Hainan shopping boom, state-owned CTGDF seeks offshore M&A

HONG KONG -- China's policy of promoting its southern island province of Hainan as a destination for domestic shopping sprees has upended the traditional global order of duty-free retailers amid the COVID pandemic, thrusting the country's leading operator to the top.

On Friday, Peng Hui, chairman of Shanghai-listed China Tourism Group Duty Free, said the state-owned company would also list its shares in Hong Kong to raise its global brand profile and create a platform for international investors and acquisitions. The company's operations are currently concentrated in mainland China, though it has a small presence in Hong Kong, Macao and Cambodia.

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