In 2008, the total retail sales of consumer goods of the Province reached 225.609 billion Yuan, up by 25.3% over the previous year, marking the highest increase rate since 1998.
The urban and rural markets enjoyed steady development. The retail sales of consumer goods in cities reached 150.419 billion Yuan, up by 25.6% and the retail sales of consumer goods at and below county level was 75.191 billion Yuan, up by 26%. The gap of the increase rates between the retail sales of consumer goods in urban areas and rural areas was growing bigger, from 6.4% of the year before last year to 10.4% of last year.
The lodging and catering industry witnessed robust growth. And the wholesales and retail trade enjoyed steady growth. The sales of the wholesales and retail trade in 2008 reached 196.062 billion Yuan, up by 25.2%, and the sales of the lodging and catering industry reached 25.602 billion Yuan, up by 27.8%.
New changes in the regional structure of the provincial consumption emerged. The Guanzhong area’s role of leading the provincial consumption was further strengthened. As a result, the consumption in Shaan’nan and Shaanbei areas was significantly accelerated. The sales of the Guanzhong area reached 181.463 billion Yuan, up by 25.4%; that of the Shaanbei area reached 19.395 billion Yuan, up by 24.6%; and that of the Shaan’nan area was 24.752 billion Yuan, up by 24.8%.
In 2008, the consumer price index increased by 6.4%, the highest figure since 1998, of which the CPI in both the urban areas and the rural areas increased by 6.2%. Various categories of price indexes in 2008 are listed as follows (preceding year=100):
Food 115.3 Cigarettes, Alcohol and Relative Products 102.2 Clothing 100.0 Household Appliances & Articles and Service 102.3 Medicine, Medical Articles & Services and Personal Articles 102.7 Transportation and Communications 98.9 Recreational, Educational & Cultural Articles and Services 98.9 Residence 106.8 Retail Price Index 106.9 Producer Price Index 108.4 Purchasing Price Index of Raw Material, Fuel and Power 111.2 Price Index of Investment in Fixed Assets 109.5 Price Index of Real Estate Sales 108.1