44. China——A Consumer Market Full of Potential

44. 中国——一个潜力巨大的消费者市场

I have nothing but admiration for the progress China has made since I first visited in 1972. The Chinese leadership has shown great skill in achieving stunning economic growth over the past 25 years while at the same time managing the change and transition that this level of growth inevitably brings.


The development of consumer markets is an important party of this process because two-thirds of most economies are driven by consumer spending. China has huge potential consumer markets which will underpin economic growth both today and, even more so, tomorrow.


Globally, HSBC sees the consumer markets of tomorrow as China, India, Brazil, Mexico; all countries that have the potential to move very rapidly up the GDP-percapita scale. We would put China at the top of the list.


Everywhere I go, I see tangible signs of China’s progress: in the hotels, in the airports, the transport systems. And there is much more to come.


Getting the right products in the right people’s hands at the right prices is the fundamental task of a consumer economy. Putting in place the distribution systems to facilitate the creation of consumer markets is going to be hugely important in the years ahead.


In a market, you need measures to protect consumers, but not in such a heavy-handed way as to discourage investment. Drawing the line between the interests of the consumers and the interests of the producers is a delicate task for governments and business people.


I do not underestimate the challenges that China faces. But based on the track record over the past 25 years, I know China will meet the challenge and leapfrog the West in many areas—I think of technology and communications.


And in the process, China has the opportunity to avoid some of the pitfalls that have snared progress elsewhere.


The scale of the opportunity for China makes this the most important meeting that I attend every year. I am honored to be a participant. Thank you!




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