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              Shanghai demonstrates strongest consumption power in Q1

              By Yang Yang | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2020-04-24 13:24

              Li Jiaqi, a Chinese blogger, who endorses beauty products through livestreaming, applies lipstick during a live broadcast on the Taobao platform in Shanghai. [Photo by Niu Jing/For China Daily]

              China's financial center Shanghai has demonstrated the strongest consumption power in the first quarter this year, Sina Finance reported on Friday.

              With 10,410 yuan ($1,470.95) per capita consumption expenditure, Shanghai took the crown on the list of China's 31 provinces and regions in per capita consumption expenditure in Q1, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.

              The capital city, Beijing, and East China's Zhejiang province took second and third places on the list with 10,003 yuan and 7,891 yuan per capita consumption expenditure, respectively.

              National residents' per capita consumption expenditure reached 5,082 yuan, with tobacco and alcohol, housing, transportation and communications ranked as the top three consumption categories, accounting for 33.6 percent, 24.4 percent and 11.9 percent, respectively.

              Nine provinces and regions' per capita consumption expenditure surpassed that of the national level in the first quarter of this year, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.

              Online and health consumption witnessed rapid growth, although the novel coronavirus outbreak had relatively big impact on residents' product and service consumption, said Fang Xiaodan, director of the Household Surveys Office, National Bureau of Statistics.

              As a convenient way of purchasing, online consumption filled the gap of outdoor consumption when people stay at home for quarantine due to epidemic control, making consumption move from offline to online and leading to a significant increase in online consumption in Q1.

              In terms of specific consumption categories, the popularity of e-commerce live streaming and service consumption indicate that the emerging consumption modes have great potential, said Su Jian, director of the National Economic Research Center, Peking University.

              China has issued diversified kinds of coupons to stimulate consumption since March and the first four rounds of coupon issuance has led to 3.42 billion yuan consumption in Hangzhou, East China's Zhejiang province.

              From the experiences in East China's Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces, distributing coupons has played a relatively effective role in expanding consumption and markets, said NBS spokesman Mao Shengyong at a news conference in Beijing on April 17.

              Distributing coupons is just one of the short-term measures to stimulate consumption and it can play a bigger role by coordinating with other polices to stabilize growth and employment.

              A slew of measures have been launched to further stimulate consumption in the country. Shanghai announced it will hold a shopping gala on May 5 and launched measures to boost consumers' confidence and release consumption demand on Thursday.

              Beijing will focus on leading consumption during the May Day holiday, promoting upgrading of traditional shopping malls and catering consumption, and liberalizing cultural and sports activities in an orderly manner, said Xu Hejian, director of the Information Office of Beijing Municipal Government at a press conference on April 17.

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