China is set to overtake the US and become the world’s largest apparel and footwear market in 2017. Both China and the US are set to be the greatest gainers in apparel and footwear internet retailing over the period 2013 to 2018.
In both these markets, the channel will be creating new sales rather than cannibalising from other channels. But China will have the edge, and is set to overtake the US to become the world's largest apparel and footwear market in 2017. While the US maintained its lead, China has scaled the rankings at a striking pace, leapfrogging from being the 19th largest online market in 2008 to the second in 2013.
The US will continue to have an edge over China, however, in the online market. Consumer motivations and expectations of the online channel remain significantly different in China from the US, throwing up differing opportunities and challenges for international brands and retailers. China is likely to overtake the US to become the world’s largest economy in terms of purchasing power parity this year.
Already China is the world’s hottest market for business travelers, and spending in the country could surpass the US as soon as 2015. Business travel spending in China was 23 per cent of the global total. That’s second only to the US.