Small Retailers Suffer Snowballing Losses

  • By Jang Hyeong-tae

    March 17, 2020 12:01

    Small retailers in Korea's shopping districts have seen a decline in customer traffic of around an 80 percent due to the coronavirus outbreak, causing an estimated W300 billion in losses a day (US$1=W1,226).

    The Korea Federation of Micro Enterprise analyzed KT big data and found that customer traffic in the Jung district of central Seoul declined 78.5 percent from 9.3 million to two million from Feb. 9 to 29.

    The federation calculated small shops' daily revenues in 2019 at W560,000 and assumes there are 670,000 small stores in Seoul. "An 80 percent decline in customer traffic across the country would mean a daily loss of W300 billion," it said.

    The federation last week asked the government and National Assembly for emergency funding, tax waivers and eased loan obligations for small shopkeepers.

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