Online Shopping Booming in Tibet



After finishing a day's work, Drolma, a Tibetan woman, sits down before her computer and begins her online shopping on taobao.com, the largest online retailing business circle in Asia.

Since Dorlma learned from her colleagues how to buy goods via the Internet, surfing on Taobao has been part of her life.

Since it takes a relatively long time for products to be available in Tibet, E-Commerce, online shopping in particular, has been booming in the region in recent years, playing an increasingly important role in people's daily life.

A Taobao's customer surnamed Wang said that her first online shopping experience has made her a loyal Taobao customer.

She explained, "Clothes on Tibet's market are drab in color and style, and sell at a price higher than in other parts of China, whereas goods from online shops are attractive in terms of both quality and price."

An online shop owner surnamed Xu from Lhasa, capital of Tibet, registered on Taobao in 2006, engaging in the business of Tibetan-style ornaments and handicrafts, Tibetan medicines and Tibetan incense.

He said that in 2006, there were only twenty to thirty online shops handling Tibetan goods and the net monthly profit rate of his shop was 50 percent. But with more and more registered sellers, the competition has been becoming increasingly fiercer, with his monthly profit rate plunging to 20 percent.

Speaking of the future of his online shop, Xu was optimistic, saying, "I have full confidence in the development of E-Commerce. Online shops, a kind of low-cost business model, will definitely have a bright future in the midst of slowing global economic growth."

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