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Apple Opening More Flagship Retail Stores in China

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Apple opened a new store in Chongqing Municipality in southwest China on last week, bringing the number of Apple stores in the Chinese mainland to 11.

Another Apple store is expected to be opened this week Wuxi City in east China's Jiangxu Province, about a one-hour drive from Shanghai.

Apple CEO Tim Cook said last year the company will open more than 25 stores in China, although he didn't specify the timeframe.

Apple's website currently shows job opportunities in Apple stores in 16 provinces and municipalities in China, although only five currently have Apple stores at the moment.

However, Apple faces an increased challenge in the local market after the mobile networks decided to curb handset subsidies in the future as the government switches from a business tax to VAT.

Apple is expected to try and reduce its reliance on sales through the mobile networks as a result, and may ramp up its retail store presence in the country.

Despite that, iPhone sales increased nearly 50 percent in the second quarter of this year. Tim Cook was quoted as saying, "China, honestly, was surprising to us," adding that "the unit growth was really off the charts across the board."

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Tags: apple  China