China retail sales grow $1,457bn as consumer spending confounds downturn

China's consumer spending increases in Q1 despite economic slowdown / Unsplash

Chinese retail sales grew to $1,457bn in the first quarter of 2019 in a sign the country’s economic downturn is not yet impacting consumer spending.

The increase of more than 8% year-on-year is positive news for marketers in the face of the economic downturn and the impact of the China and US trade war.

The figures from the National Bureau of Statistics of China revealed that online sales represented nearly 23% of overall retail sales and totaled $333bn in Q1.

Online sales increased 15.3% year-on-year driven by food, clothing and other commodities which increased 24.6%, 19.1%, and 21.3%, respectively.

More than 85% of sales came from urban areas while 14.7% came from rural areas, indicating increases of 8.2% and 9.2% year-on-year, respectively.

The figures support the continued growth which is forecast for the world’s largest retail market, the e-commerce market alone is forecast to reach $1.8tn in 2022.

Join us, it's free.

Become a member to get access to:

  • Exclusive Content
  • Daily and specialised newsletters
  • Research and analysis

Join us, it’s free.

Want to read this article and others just like it? All you need to do is become a member of The Drum. Basic membership is quick, free and you will be able to receive daily news updates.