5 Nov 2016

Recession: Dubai Luxury Shops Say They're Missing Nigerians

Dubai luxury shops are feeling the absence of Nigerians who have been kept away from their usual travels to Asia’s shopping capital by a weaker naira and higher airfares, Business Day reports.

Nigerians who typically buy huge volumes of luxury goods are cutting down on their expenses. “Before now, purchases from Nigerians made up about 18% of our market share, but it has dropped to about eight percent this year.

I tell you the truth, we really miss Nigerians here and we hope things get better so that they can shop again as they used to,” Bilal Chaouch, sales manager, Paul Smith, said.

“We hope the government in Nigeria will help provide dollars for Nigerians to come and shop here as they use to do. We hope things get better because patronage by Nigerians has been part of our success story,” he added.

Johanna Pascual, sales manager, Accessorize, also said Nigerians often bought accessories in large quantities but there has been a sharp drop this year because only few Nigerians have been visiting recently and those who come do not buy as much as they used to.

“I always believed Nigerians were very rich people because when they came to buy gold, they always bought in large quantities and paid immediately. But that has changed now. We have not sold as much as we sold accessories by this time last year,” Pascual disclosed.

Gilbert, a sales representative of Timex, said he has observed a sharp drop in demand from Nigerians for luxury brands. The Dubai attraction has lost its shine as Nigerians now struggle at the airports to get dollars to travel unlike before when they could easily travel with the cards and shop in over 200 countries around the world.

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