After the Covid-19 pandemic that shut down the economy since 2019, the Durga Puja festival in West Bengal is back with an estimated 20-30 percent increase in festive spending.
Retail is the main contributor to the state’s Durga Puja economy, which was Rs. 32,377 billion in 2019, according to a British Council study conducted for the state government.
Retail accounts for 85 percent of the total puja economy, and the rest is divided into pandal making, decoration, lighting, entertainment, advertising, food and drink, and others.
The President of the Confederation of West Bengal Traders Association, Sushil Poddar, said that given the trends in several consumption sectors, growth can be safely forecast at 20-30 percent.
“Inflation is very high this year, even compared to 2019. Value growth will be better than volume growth,” he said.
Kumar Rajagopalan, CEO of the Retailers Association of India, said: “Growth of 20-25 per cent (in retail sales) from pre-pandemic levels of 2019 will be the right kind of growth, despite inflation.” Amid the healthy growth expectations of the ” Puja economy” in 2022 compared to 2019, their share of the state GDP could remain at 2.4 to 2.5 percent. As per the budget estimates for 2022-23, the GDP of West Bengal is estimated at Rs 17,13,154 crore.
The economy of Durga Puja accounted for 2.5 percent of the state’s GDP in 2019, according to the British Council report.
GST collection data for the holiday will come later, state GST Commissioner Khalid Anwar told PTI.
“We are seeing continued high growth in the government GST census and expect the festive months to remain robust. Cumulative growth in the current fiscal year was over 20 percent,” said Anwar.
The city’s shopping centers are doing well.
“Last week we saw 30 percent more traffic and sales than the same period in 2019, over 50 percent more than 2021 and over 65 percent more than 2020. Brands in the apparel category raked in the moolah,” said K Vijayan, GM, Acropolis Mall and Homeland Mall.
Manmohan Bagree, Manager of South City Mall, said: “Overall business in the retail industry has seen good growth across India. The brands had targeted business growth of 10 to 15 percent compared to 2019.” Faced with growing demand from this region, the e-commerce giants have also strengthened their supply centers. Flipkart recently opened India’s largest modern logistics hub in Haringhata.
Amit Mitra, the regional director of Rapport Advertising, part of the multinational IPG group, told PTI that this year’s puja inventory was “house full.”
In 2022, both local brands and large corporations wanted their outdoor campaigns to be more aggressive than those in 2019, he said, adding: “Growth is at least 20 to 25 per cent,” according to the British Council report.
After retail, food and drink is the largest category of the puja economy, which was worth Rs. 2,854 billion two years ago, according to the report.
Hotel and Restaurant Association of the East secretary Sudesh Poddar said visitor numbers have surged and people have started to flock since Mahalaya and business is estimated at 25-30 percent higher than in 2019.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)