Total retail sales fell by 8.0% y-o-y in the first two months of Q2 2020 owing to a decline in global crude oil prices and weaker sales of new automobiles and electric scooters.Core retail sales, which exclude the aforementioned categories, fell by 5.8% y-o-y over the same period, reflecting weaker consumer sentiment amid a sharp global economic downturn.
Retailers retained a conservative attitude towards expansion in Q2 2020, although a few large stores were leased by fashion retailers. Vacancy rates in some major shopping districts rose to double-digit levels as an increasing number of small retailers closed shops in response to a drastic decline in sales. Landlords of high street shops became more willing to offer short-term rent abatements over the quarter. Average high street rents in Taipei decreased by 2.59% q-o-q.