The amount we spent on duty-free increased 13 percent last year, according to preliminary figures released March 16, with much of the growth coming from increased consumption of luxury products.

Data compiled by Swedish industry analyst Generation Research and published by TREND News show that the global duty-free and travel retail market was up by $4.5 billion (€3.18 billion), reaching a whopping $39 billion (€27.59 billion) in 2010.

The increase was particularly marked in luxury goods, suggested Generation Research, which saw a 16.7 percent boost in sales to more than $14 billion (€9.9 billion).

Fragrances and cosmetics saw the next largest increase, up by 12.6 percent, while confectionery and fine food were up 11.2 percent and wines and spirits were up 10.9 percent.

TREND News reported that the growth of Asia-Pacific markets was behind much of the good news, along with other emerging markets such as Russia, Turkey and Brazil.

The Americas also fuelled much of the growth, along with the Middle East, followed by Africa and then Europe, which was in the bottom spot.

However, despite the slow growth, Europe still remains the largest market for duty-free and travel retail buying, followed by Asia Pacific, the Americas, the Middle East and Africa.

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