Hangzhou has 131 shops selling fireworks this year, 40 percent fewer than last year.
“I’m really worried about the business even though I stored only a third of last year’s amount,” said Ni Yuanyuan, who sells fireworks on Jingtan Road in Jianggan District. “I sold only 300 yuan (US$49) worth of goods by yesterday afternoon.”
“The period for fireworks sales is cut short by six days this year and fireworks are allowed only on three days, Chinese New Year’s Eve, lunar New Year, and Lantern Festival. I am afraid I can’t meet this year’s sales target,” Ni said.
Yesterday was the first day of the allowed period for firework sales. The business has declined for three years as more and more people give up their habit over environmental concerns.
“Last year I stocked more than 20,000 yuan of fireworks and had to return half of them to suppliers due to poor business,” Ni added. “There were a dozen fireworks dealers in the central business area last year. We are the only one left.”
Ni said he will not renew his firework sales permit after it expires this year. Each permit is valid for three years.
So far this year, Hangzhou police have detained 25 people for illegally transporting and stocking 18,546 boxes of fireworks.
Source: Hangzhou International Center