China is now the world’s second-biggest consumer of high-priced wine, the South China Morning Post said Wednesday, citing a report prepared for the international wine exhibition Vinexpo.
Drinkers in China, including Hong Kong, trailed only the US in terms of their willingness to spend US$10 or more on a bottle of wine, according to the report.
While China is the world’s fifth largest wine consumer, the pace of growth has been slowing lately. Consumption increased 134.3 percent in 2008-2012 but is forecast to grow 33.8 percent in 2013-2017, the newspaper said.
The nation’s spending on more expensive wines surged almost 430 percent in 2008-2012 and is expected to grow almost 60 percent to 46 million cases by 2017 in a global trade tipped to be worth US$183 billion a year, the report said.
Last year, China became the world’s largest consumer of red wine at 155 million nine-liter cases, compared with 150 million cases in France, which slipped to No. 2, according to the newspaper.
China is predicted to keep the top spot at least until 2017, it added.
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