HONG KONG (Reuters) – While months of anti-government protests have taken a toll on Hong Kong businesses, from luxury retailers to hotels and restaurants, Keita Lee’s pop-up stall is thriving.
Since demonstrations escalated in mid-June, Lee, 33, has been running what he has dubbed the National Calamity Hardware Store, selling protest essentials – hard hats, gas masks and goggles – near rally hot spots.
Part-entrepreneur, part-activist, he has taken out short-term leases on storefronts in at least four districts, shifting to evade police and hostile landlords.
“I’ve never had a business like this before. It’s insane,” Lee told Reuters in his latest shop in the gritty district of Cheung Sha Wan on the Kowloon peninsula.
Hong Kong’s government invoked colonial-era emergency laws last week, including a ban on face masks, which have been widely used by protesters to hide their identities. Lee dismissed any suggestion the regulation would hurt his business, saying more…
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