China will overtake India to become the biggest gold consumer this year as its bullion consumption jumped 54 percent in the first six months from a year earlier, according to the China Gold Association.
Gold consumption, including jewelry, bars, coins and industrial use, totaled 706.4 tons in the first half, up 246.8 tons from a year ago.
Jewelry consumption rose 43.6 percent to 383.9 tons while that for bullion bars soared 86.5 percent to 278.8 tons, the association said on its website yesterday.
China surpassed India in the first quarter of this year when it consumed 306.4 tons, compared to the latter's 256.5 tons, according to data from the World Gold Council, which however, excludes industrial consumption in its data categorized by countries.
China's surging demand for bullion was partially driven by a nationwide buying spree extended from February's Spring Festival to April after world bullion prices plummeted.
China's gold supply rose 8.9 percent from a year earlier to 192.8 tons during the first six months, the association said.
China is the biggest gold jewelry producer with about 60 percent of global production. Its gold consumption may more than double the output of bullion by 2015, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology predicted earlier.
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