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    Malaysian Chinese Prepare to Celebrate the Lunar New Year


    by NTDTelevision

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    Ethnic Chinese in Malaysia's capital rush to do their last minute shopping ahead of the Lunar New Year. Preparations are underway to welcome the Year of the Rabbit.

    In downtown Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia's ethnic Chinese population are busy with preparations ahead of the Lunar New Year next week, which will usher in the Year of the Rabbit.

    Shops selling festive decorations have stocked up on bunny-shaped ornaments in gold and auspicious banners adorned with rabbit cartoons in anticipation of brisk sales.

    Consumers say New Year goods this year, including food, plants and decorations are more expensive compared to last year.

    [Ng Cheng Pang, Shopper]:
    "For example, Chinese New Year goods have become more expensive after the exchange rate of Chinese yuan have risen against the Malaysian Ringgit. Given that most of the ornaments were imported from China, we have no choice but to follow suit."

    Despite rising prices, shoppers are still flocking to flower shops to pick out plants for the New Year, hoping it will bring good fortune.

    [Hew, Shopper]:
    "Tangerines mean getting prosperity, fortune and luck in the next year, so we'll have a smooth year ahead - it's very auspicious. As for cherry blossoms, I hope it will bring some luck to my son, he's yet to be married."

    The Lunar New Year falls on February 3rd.