China: is the craze for consumption really there?

In China, economic recovery seems to be undeniably underway, but what is the state of mind of Chinese consumers? Luxury goods bosses on the ground in the country discuss the Chinese desire to consume.

Béatrice Peyrani

By Béatrice Peyrani24 mars 2021

In the luxury sector, Chinese consumption will increase by 20% in 2021 according to Consensus Altagamma (Shutterstock)

On the Chinese calendar it’s the Year of the Ox, and appropriately enough a lot of people are bullish about the recovery of the economy. While it’s true that the ox symbolizes prosperity through hard work, the numbers already indicate that the country is well on the way to bouncing back: for 2021, Chinese forecasts indicate that the country’s GDP is expected to grow by more than 6%, and in the luxury sector Chinese consumption is set to increase by 20% in 2021 according to Consensus Altagamma – much more than in Europe (11%) or North America (12%).

In the Land of the Red Dragon, the pandemic seems to be under control, if the long lines outside luxury boutiques are anything to go by. But what is the state of mind of the Chinese today, and how is the luxury market evolving?

The mood of the consumer

The first to shed light on the Chinese climate is Jacopo Cordero, an Italian entrepreneur who has lived in Shanghai for years. “There is a general euphoria in China,” he says. “I’m seeing lines everywhere, especially outside of luxury brand boutiques. A friend of mine, a VIP Chanel customer with privileged access, told me that she waited 40 minutes to enter the boutique

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