- April 2012: Vol. 4 No. 4

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Consuming China: China’s Retail Property Sector Is Entering a Golden Period of Development

by Stanley Ching

China’s consumption power has enjoyed massive growth, with retail sales having recorded double-digit growth since 2001. In 2011, retail sales reached 18.12 trillion yuan (US$2.9 trillion), a year-on–year increase of 17.1 percent, while the rest of world is still struggling. This growth is set to continue as the government focuses on steering economic growth away from its current dependence on investments and exports toward a more consumption-driven economy.

A comparison with other countries shows how relatively low consumption is in China. In 2008, private consumption accounted for only 37 percent of China’s GDP, compared with 50 percent in Russia, 56 percent in India, 57 percent in Japan, 60 percent in Brazil and 70 percent in the United States, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit. Because this is the second-lowest proportion out of all the G-20 countries, it is reasonable to assume that Chinese consumption power has plenty of room for further

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