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Home >> Opinion
UPDATED: 14:55, December 22, 2004
A digital China in the eyes of foreigners
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The French L'Express weekly carried an article on December 6 titled China's Records In the Eyes of Foreigners.

It has a population of 1.3 billion. One of every five persons on this planet is Chinese.

It has twenty cities with a population of over 5 million and 100 with a population of over 1 million.

It has almost unlimited labor resources and a 752-million population with working ability.

China imports more and more from overseas: $500 billion this year and is expected to reach $1 trillion by 2010. It has a trade surplus of $124 billion with the US.

It now has an elderly population of 131 million and is expected to have 200 million by the year 2015. By 2040 people of over 60 would account for 28 percent of the national population while the current percentage is 11 percent. Average life expectancy has been raised from 40 years in 1949 to 71.4 years in 2002.

Shanghai is China's largest city with a population of 17 million. GDP of the Shanghai region is equivalent to that of Brazil.

According to the World Bank 400 million Chinese have lifted from poverty in 20 years.

About 200 million rural population have left the countryside and settled in the city since 2000. Another 300 million rural population is expected to do so by the year 2030.

Foreigners invest about $1 billion in China every week. Investment in the first ten months of 2004 has reached $53.8 billion, which has broken the record set in 2003. In 2004 its GDP accounts for 4.5 percent of global GDP and ranks the 7th biggest economic power.

Its per capita national income is now $1,090 ranking the 100th worldwide.

In the first seven months this year China has exported 73 million handsets (year-on-year increase of 55 percent). There is one handset made in China in every three sold worldwide. About 550 billion short messages have been sent in China, of which 10 billion were sent during the Spring Festival.

China has 100 million netizens ranking the 2nd worldwide after the United States. It may jump to the first place by 2010.

China has 30 million online game fans. Because of this China has the largest online gaming population in the world.

In 2003 China sold 10.5 million personal computers, which double the annual sale in France. By 2010 China may become the largest PC producer.

TCL, which is the number one TV producer in the world, has a market share of 10 percent. It has sold 18 million TV sets in 2004.

In every two digital cameras sold worldwide more than one is made by China.

By the year 2007 about one third global electronic industry will settle in China.

Global dignitaries of the catering industry would open 375 new stores in China (KFC and Pizzahut have opened 1,000 and 120 stores respectively in China).

There were 8,000 supermarkets in China in 2003. Among the 53 extra-large stores Carrefour ranks the fifth.

By 2020 China would build 500 million square meters of housing each year.

In 2003 about 20 million Chinese toured overseas. By 2020 the figure may reach 100 million.

About 10,300 kilometers of expressway have been put to operation in two years. By comparison the French expressway network has only 8,000 kilometers. Another 70,000 kilometers are expected to be built by 2010 with a pace of 5,000 kilometers each year.

The total length of China's railway network is only two times longer than that of France. However, its passenger transportation is 7 times higher than that of France.

China completed the construction of world's largest container ship in November 2004, which is three times larger than the Stadium of France. It is 115 meters high and can hold 8,200 containers.

China uses about one fourth of the containers used worldwide. In 2003 the container throughput of Chinese ports was 48 million while the figure in 1999 was only 16 million, increasing by 200 percent. Shanghai uses the third most containers in the world after Hong Kong and Singapore. By 2020 it would become No.1. Moreover, China is the largest container producer. CIMC is a Shenzhen company which takes a 50 percent share in the global container market. In 2003 its production was 1 million.

By 2010 China would become the second largest advertising market in the world leading Japan and after the US. In 2003 it ranks the fifth with expenditure on advertising reaching $14.5 billion. Among ten of the largest advertising clients eight are local. By 2012 the TV ad market would grow five times.

In China 300,000 persons are very rich. Apart from fixed assets their disposable assets reach $1 million.

There are 651 TV stations and more than 1,000 radio stations in China, which ranks second in world market after the US.

Of the global industrial output value China accounts for about 7 percent. In twenty years this proportion may expand to 25 percent.

In 2003 2.1 million automobiles were sold in China. Santana shares 15 percent of the market and has sold 200,000 this year. Apart from Germany China is the largest market of Volkswagon automobile.

According to statistics of Morgan Stanley potential consumers of luxurious goods make up 8 percent of the Chinese population - about 100 million. Currently this consumer group accounts for only 1 percent of the residents - about 13 million. Louis Vuitton opened its largest luxurious goods company (900 square meters) in Shanghai on September 23. LVMH leadership estimated that it would take 20-25 years before the market share in China can catch up with that in the US (25 percent of global sales).

The British Bentley automobile sold 70 cars in China in the year 2003, of which 19 old-style automobiles were the most expensive.

China is the second largest tea producer in the world (23 percent of global tea production) after India. It is also the second largest orange producer after the US.

A new power plant emerges every week in China. The growth of electricity market in 2004 alone is equivalent to the aggregate of electricity market in Britain.

Of the 13 billion pairs of shoes produced worldwide China accounts for 7 billion pairs, of which 4 billion are for export. This makes it the No.1 ahead of India.

From 1995 to 2003 European import of Chinese cloths grew nearly three times from 3.9 billion euro to 10.6 billion euro. Five of every six ski suits sold in Europe were made in China. Two of every three pieces of children cloths come from China. The US imported 276 billion pairs of Chinese shoes in 2003 increasing 22 times compared with 2001. Three of every four toys in the world were made in China's Shenzhen Special Zone. Eight of every ten artificial Christmas trees were made in China.

Wal-mart purchases $15 billion worth of goods in China each year. The world's biggest distributor, which has 42 stores in China, can sell 10 percent of its Chinese import in the US.

Life insurance in China develops with the fastest speed in the world (30% growth each year for ten years). In 2002 the amount of life insurance reached $28 billion. In 2008 this figure would reach $100 billion leading France and Germany. China Life Insurance is the largest insurance company in China, which has a 69 percent market share.

Each year 190,000 Chinese die from misusing medicines. China is the largest tobacco producer in the world, which produces 1.9 trillion cigarettes each year. Smokers in the country accounts for one third in the world.

Yiwu is 300 kilometers away from Shanghai. It is world's largest wholesale market for small commodities. Overseas buyers swarm there for procurement.

China's steel output grew 2.5 times in five years. Baosteel is China's No.1 iron and steel company. It has a turnover of $14 billion and 100,000 employees.

China is world's largest tungsten producer. A considerable part of the US' tungsten strategic reserves is supplied by China.

China produces 2.3 billion condoms each year.

China is world's second largest carton producer and consumer. From 1993 to 2003 consumption of cartons in China increased from 5 million tons to 14 million tons.

China is the largest exporter of granite floor tile. The ground of the square in front of the city hall of Marseilles (France) is paved with Chinese floor tiles.

China is world's largest producer of aspirin and vitamin C. In 2003 its vitamin C export reached 54,000 tons - about one third of global consumption (China excluded).

France has the largest trade deficit with China. In 2004 it reached 10 billion euro. On the list of French imports from China the leading products are computer parts, printers, DVD machines, traveling bags, sneakers, toys etc. Necktie import in 2003 grew four times and reached 7.6 million euro. Import of eyeglasses grew three times in five years from 41 million euro to 120 million euro.

According to a survey by Morgan Stanley American consumers have saved $100 billion buying cheap Chinese products since 1978 when China began to implement the reform and opening up policy. From 1998 to 2003 young American parents saved $400 million on children cloths alone through purchasing Chinese goods.

By People's Daily Online


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