May 27, 2011
Chinese demand for gold bars and coins as private investments could push bullion imports above 400 tonnes in 2011, leading global consultancy GFMS said on Friday.
Increased appetite for silver investment products too, combined with a forecast 16 percent annual growth in industrial demand, means China’s total silver consumption could outstrip domestic supply this year, said Philip Kalpwijk, executive chairman of GFMS.
“There is a widening demand for silver as investment in China because of its lower entry point. It is also being increasingly recognized as an physical investment asset, which will support demand,” Kalpwijk told a conference in Shanghai.
The Chinese government does not publish official statistics on gold imports but the World Gold Council said China produced 340 tonnes of gold in 2010.
Total consumption was about 700 tonnes, leaving a gap of around 300 tonnes made up by either imports or sales of existing stocks last year.