HONG KONG. DFS Group has signed a memorandum of understanding to partner with Shenzhen State-owned Duty-Free Commodity (Group) Co., Ltd. (Shenzhen Duty Free) to bid for the duty free concession at the West Kowloon MTR Express Rail Link (XRL).
The MTR XRL is part of China’s strategic national express rail network and the tender represents the Hong Kong section of Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong XRL. The tender is due for submission on December 1, with the result expected to be announced in early 2018. The partners struck their agreement on 25 October.
Shenzhen Duty Free has more than 30 years of experience in running border duty free stores between Shenzhen and Hong Kong and today has eight border duty free stores in Shenzhen. If successful in their bid, DFS and Shenzhen Duty Free said they intend to operate the West Kowloon XRL Duty Free Concession “in a cohesive manner to provide a seamless duty free retail experience for travellers between China and Hong Kong”.
“We are excited by the opportunity to work together with Shenzhen Duty Free to create a cohesive and world-class duty free offer at West Kowloon XRL,” said DFS Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Ed Brennan. “Shenzhen Duty Free’s expertise in the management of border duty free stores in China can be applied and integrated into the West Kowloon XRL station. This collaboration creates tremendous opportunities to capture the attention of passengers as well as offering additional touch points beyond the scope of a typical border duty free store.”
“Shenzhen DF is delighted to partner with the world’s leading duty free retailer, DFS, in this initiative. West Kowloon XRL is a great achievement in policy breakthrough for Hong Kong, connecting Hong Kong to a vast and growing high-speed rail network in China,” said Shenzhen DF Secretary of the Party Committee and Chairman of the Board of Directors Chen Shao Qun. “The West Kowloon XRL is an extremely important Sino-Hong Kong infrastructure project, and this potential collaboration between China-based Shenzhen DF and Hong Kong-based DFS is highly symbolic of the bright and prosperous future ahead.”
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