Energy in China

Macro Level

According to the United Nations, the world’s total population will increase from 7.2 billion in mid-2013 to 9.6 billion in 2050. The United Nations also projects that the world’s urban population will rise from 3.6 billion in 2010 to 6.3 billion in 2050; that is an increase of almost 70 million people every year. China will continue to converge with the advanced world, adding nearly 9 million people a year to urban areas.

McKinsey Global Institute estimates that annual consumption in emerging markets will rise from just under a third of world consumption to nearly one-half, from US$12 trillion in 2010 to US$30 trillion in 2025.

China's Demand for Energy

Demand from the expanding middle class and associated growth in global urban infrastructure will continue to drive demand for minerals, energy commodities and power used in the construction of housing, buildings, bridges and subway systems.

According to HSBC research, US$11 trillion needs to be spent on urban infrastructure in Asia by 2030 as 650 million people are expected to move to cities.

Demand for both commodities and renewable energy will continue to grow as China moves from low to upper middle income levels. Based on historical patterns, consumption of energy and metals typically grows together with income until real GDP per capita reaches about $15,000 to $20,000 (purchasing power parity adjusted US dollars) as countries go through a period of industrialisation and infrastructure construction.