BEIJING, March 14 (Xinhua) -- Tax refund service provider Global Blue said on Thursday that the amount of Chinese tourists' overseas shopping it has handled hit a record high in 2012.
Arjen Kruger, chief marketing officer of Switzerland-based Global Blue, said the company handled 24.4 billion yuan (3.9 billion U.S.dollars) worth of goods Chinese consumers bought overseas last year, a 58-percent year-on-year surge.
Kruger told a news briefing that Global Blue collected the figures from 38 countries, mainly in Europe and Asia, where it helped Chinese visitors to do the tax refund.
He said his company has a share of nearly 90 percent of the tax refund service market. Based on his figures, Chinese consumers' spending on overseas shopping last year is estimated to be some 27 billion yuan.
According to Global Blue's survey, 82 percent of Chinese tourists see shopping as a vital part of their trips overseas.
France, Germany and Singapore ranked as the top three favorite destinations of Chinese tourists. Luxury brands, including jewelry, watches and clothes, took up 60 to 70 percent of Chinese people's shopping list last year.