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Printing companies hit by austerity push

       A calendar company in Guangzhou may have to sell products worth more than 5 million yuan ($820,380) as waste paper after a ban by China's top anti-graft agency on Oct 31 on using public funds to buy printed gifts, such as calendars and cards.

 

       Yatao Calendar Gift Co, which generated revenue of more than 8 million yuan last year and received orders by phone constantly in November 2012, has had more than half its clients canceling their orders this year, manager Li Jianhua said, Southern Metropolis News reported.

 

       "We can hardly cover the cost this year," he said.

 

       Another calendar company in the city said sales this month had dropped by more than 40 percent year-on-year, with products being sold at cost price.

 

       A calendar printing company in Foshan, also in Guangdong province, suspended printing last week.

 

       A bank in Guangzhou required that its branches not buy calendars with public funds this year. A large branch used to spend 3 million yuan a year on printed gifts. Branches that ordered calendars early and have already received them are not distributing them but storing them in warehouses, Southern Metropolis News reported.

 

       At the same time, high-end hotels in Guangzhou are receiving few bookings from government agencies, State-owned enterprises and public institutions to stage annual meetings.

 

       Those that have placed orders are mainly privately owned or foreign-funded companies.