Release of medium-to-long term outlook on respective agenda based
on the analysis of pending macroeconomic issues

KDI Journal of Economic Policy

KDI Journal of Economic Policy, August 2017

China’s Consumer Market: Growth, Changes, and Korea’s Opportunities

SUMMARY This paper examines the aspects of changes in China’s consumer market since the mid-1980s. By comparing urban and rural residents’ expenditures, I find that the rural consumer market has exhibited extraordinary growth. Over the past decade, the consumption growth rate and average propensity to consume by rural residents have surpassed those of their urban counterparts, with the former’s consumption patterns becoming increasingly similar to the latter’s. Such a phenomenon prevails in rural areas which neighbor secondand third-tier cities where urbanization is progressing rapidly. These findings imply that Korean companies need to diversify their export goods in line with China’s expanding rural markets while further differentiating their product composition to satisfy the heterogeneous demands in urban areas. With regard to the government, efforts must be made to strengthen the export cooperative system so that it targets not only urban but also rural markets in China.
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