Clearwater Bay residents are complaining about so many shops being shut down in the Hau Tak wet market. But an amiable Link Reit spokesman says, “No need to worry.”
About 15 per cent of the shops are shuttered. In the fruit section, about half of the stalls are gone.
The Chinese press describes Link Reit as “a bloodsucker. It kills shops and makes money from their death.”
Customer Relations Manager So Hong Ling cheerfully says it’s transition time at Hau Tak. Some tenancies came to an end in September. “New tenants are coming in. Every single one of the shops has been let. The market will fill up again in October.”
“We hope to serve you better,” he said.
Link Reit did an initial public offering 10 years ago with seven per cent of Hong Kong residents applying for shares. The largest real estate trust in Asia by market capitalisation, its mall improvements have met with mixed reviews. Small operators who gave residents food products at low prices have been forced out, leading to cost of living increases for those who can least afford them.