An offshore duty-free program on the popular holiday island of Hainan has made more than 19 billion yuan (2.94 billion U.S. dollars) in its first five years, official data showed on Wednesday.
Haikou customs said that the island province's two offshore duty-free stores have received around 6.25 million customers and sold more than 24 million duty-free items since the island launched the program on April 20, 2011.
One of the shops is in the provincial capital of Haikou and the other, the world's largest, in the resort city of Sanya.
The State Council, China's cabinet, gave Hainan permission to run a trial duty-free program to develop the island as a tourist destination.
Under a policy adopted in February, non-locals are allowed to buy duty-free products with a total value up to 16,000 yuan before leaving the island by air.
The two duty-free shops also allow travelers to order on the Internet and pick up the products at the airport.
Hainan tourism has boomed since the program started.
Xinhua, April 20, 2016