Denmark: Retailers stock up for Eid

The over 200,000 Muslims in Denmark will put a smile on the faces of the country's retail executives this week as the customers stock up for the celebrations accompanying the end of the Islamic holy period of Ramadan, the 'Eid'.

According to financial daily newspaper Børsen, purchases nationwide will result in an added turnover of hundreds of million kroner.

Telephone giant TDC reports that the sale of electronic items skyrocket during this period, when Muslim tradition dictates they buy each other gifts as part of Ramadan's close.

'Ramadan is a celebration similar to Christmas,' said Per Christiansen, communications advisor for TDC. 'People give each other gifts - often money - which the receiver often uses to purchase items such as mobile phones.'

Christensen said TDC target advertised for Ramadan last year and has an Arabic and Turkish customer service line. He said the company has got considerable positive feedback for the service from its non-Danish-speaking customers.

Jørgen Bæk Simonsen, professor at the University of Copenhagen's Department of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies, agreed that the end of Ramadan takes on a Christmas-like atmosphere.

'Like Christmas, the consumer aspect of Ramadan is demonstrated through the purchase of good food items and dressing the family up in new clothes,' said Simonsen. 'In addition, there is the exchange of gifts.'

Simonsen said the more money a person has, the more expensive the gifts they will buy.

'There's a social prestige in the Eid. Families want to dress themselves in a way so that everyone can see how well-off they are.'

Source: Copenhagen Post (English)

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