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Spending Smart: What contributes to China’s consumption upgrade?

Updated: Feb 23,2018 9:52 AM

Consumption upgrade is the highlight in this year’s Spring Festival. According to China’s Ministry of Commerce, retail and catering service sectors enjoyed a boom during this year’s holiday. The two sectors registered nearly a trillion yuan in sales, up 10.2 percent from last year. Quality consumption, cultural and entertainment consumption are the trends.

What the main reasons behind the robust consumption? Ding Yifan, senior fellow at the Institute of World Development under the Development Research Center of the State Council, attributed it into two aspects.

Firstly, Chinese per capita disposal income is rising faster than its GDP ratio. It showed that Chinese people is getting wealthier. Moreover, thanks to progress in social security welfare, Chinese people are covered when they get sick, retired, or face other accidents so they have more money to spend on other things.

All the excitement in online shopping platforms cannot be missed. During the Spring Festival holiday, China’s online retailers are introducing different themes for their respective shopping festivals.

Take China’s top three online retailers for example: Alibaba’s Tmall offered an AR shopping experience; joined hands with 100 Chinese traditional brands for sales promotion; and Suning also put up special online-offline promotions for its home appliances collection.

That consumption extravaganza also connected closely with China’s logistics industry, as most logistics firms did not stop service during the Chinese New Year. China’s major logistics firms are increasing their demands on intelligent logistics mainly on data, cloud computing and equipment. And those progresses, in Ding’s point of view, will contribute to mass consumption in China as well as help get people out of poverty.

“Poor population is living in remote areas, very difficult to access. With new technologies such as AI and drone, we can deliver ordinary consuming goods to those areas. And the poor population can get access to national and international markets, selling their local products,” Ding said.

Deloitte said in its report recently that some emerging technologies including drone, robotics and automation, and big data will be used in logistics industry soon. Wearable devices, 3D printers, driverless trucks and artificial intelligence are expected to be used in storage, transportation, delivery and other end parts of logistics over next 10 years as well.