(140416) — BETHLEHEM, April 16, 2014 (Xinhua) — Palestinian Christians prepare traditional sweets for the upcoming Easter celebrations at their house in the West Bank town of Beit Sahour, near Bethlehem, on April 15, 2014. Easter is a festival and holiday celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ on the third day after his crucifixion at Calvary as described in the New Testament. (Xinhua/Luay Sababa)

Canberra, March 21 (IANS) Australian families are expected to spend generously on sweet treats during upcoming Easter, despite ongoing cost-of-living pressures, according to a new report

The report from Australian Retailers Association (ARA) in collaboration with market research firm Roy Morgan, indicated that 16.3 million Australians are planning to purchase Easter treats, such as hot cross buns and chocolate, up 1.8 million compared to the previous year, reports Xinhua news agency.

The spending would reach almost A$1.7 billion, rising 14.5 per cent from 2022, said the report.

ARA CEO Paul Zahra said that while price increases will contribute to higher spending, retail therapy remains a sweet spot in a challenging year for Australians.

“For many Australians, Easter is the last break before winter sets in, and a respite from an intense start to the year. Whilst shoppers are already beginning to tighten their purse strings, these special occasions are a welcome time of indulgence,” he said.

The report also noted around 37 per cent of Australians would consume alcohol to celebrate Easter, with total spending of A$275 million during the holiday.