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China’s soaring consumption propels economic growth

Updated: Dec 19,2017 3:36 PM

Retail sales of consumer goods in China totaled 33.15 trillion yuan ($5.01 trillion) from January to November, with the figure for online sales on Singles Day (a Chinese shopping festival that falls on Nov 11) alone reaching 253.97 billion yuan.

China’s consumption, with the upgraded traditional mode and internet-based new types both seeing continuous progress, injects enormous momentum into its economy. Bolstered by a succession of preferential policies, China is also spearheading information consumption worldwide, People’s Daily reported on Dec 19.

Consumption an economic driver and stabilizer

During the first three quarters, the contribution rate of China’s national final consumption expenditure to its economic growth rose to 64.5 percent, up 2.8 percentage points year-on-year. “Consumption persistently facilitates a steady economic growth,” said Meng Qingxin, director of the Department of Trade and External Economic Relations Statistics at the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) of China.

The steady and continuous growth in consumption comes from China’s colossal consumption potential and related effective policies. “Consumption has what it takes for expansion and structural upgrade by virtue of the accelerated growth in citizens’ income and improvements in consumption environment and preferential policies,” said Liu Aihua, spokesperson for NBS.

Consumption witnessing new modes flourish

National online retail sales during the first 11 months totaled 6.43 trillion yuan, up 32.4 percent year-on-year. “With information infrastructure being constantly consolidated, information consumption still has abundant untapped potential,” said Liu Yuanchun, executive dean of the National Academy of Development and Strategy at Renmin University.

Tourism also played a part in consumption growth, with domestic turnover worth 583.6 billion yuan attained during the seven-day National Day holiday coinciding with Mid-Autumn Festival this year.

Consumption heralding further progress in supply-side system

Over the past few years, there have been rising consumption demands in endowment insurance, education, culture, fitness, and many other fields, which call for urgent supplies of premium products and services.

“More efforts ought to be made in promoting supply-side structural reform and enhancing regulations in the domestic market, and in so doing, a surge of mid- to high-end commodities and a more secured consumption environment will meet consumers’ demands,” said Liu Yuanchun.

He added that the demand side can also do its fair share to boost consumption, which may entail improvements in labor income, social welfare and security system, and housing system reform.