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After the Berlin Wall fell, one of the first aspects of western society that East Berliners were attracted to were the supermarkets, stocked with goods and brands that simply weren't as plentiful in the formerly Communist bloc. China's "Socialism with Chinese characteristics" has long since offered Chinese people a similar consumer culture as can be found in the West. But on Tuesday, shoppers in Shanghai got their first taste of what it means to shop at an American-style warehouse club when the first Costco in China opened its doors.
It was almost immediately overrun by curious shoppers, who signed up for memberships in droves. For a few hours, everybody seemed to forget about the trade war, and simply shopped for bulk packages of peanut butter, toilet paper and whatever regionally popular products ended up in the stores.
Demand - Day - Costco - Crowds - Thousands
Demand was so intense on opening day that Costco was forced to close early as crowds of thousands of people showed up to shop.
The scene inside looked like Black Friday crowds on steroids. But according to one reporter, police soon forced the store to close for security reasons.
Hu - Xijin - Editor - Chief - Global
Hu Xijin, the editor in chief of the Global Times, pointed out that, contrary to President Trump's demand that US companies leave China and relocate back to America, Costco was moving ahead with its plans to expand within China.
"Such a grand opening can't be seen in other places," Hu said. The "Chinese market is crucial to American companies."
Signs - Store - Minhang - District - Shanghai
Signs outside the store, located in the Minhang District of Shanghai, warned customers that they might have to wait three hours...
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