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Domestic bicycle sector has huge market potential
Last Updated(Beijing Time):2008-06-10 12:48

By Xu Lijing


In the "old three items" familiar to people, the bicycle is very typical. Before the reform and opening-up, bicycle is one of the dispensable "old three items". In movies reflecting that era, it was fashionable and romantic for a young man to riding the bicycle speedily with his girl friend sitting on the backseat in the picturesque scenery.


Since the beginning of the reform and opening-up, our material conditions are greatly improved with the raise of living standards. Bicycles are getting less and less important in our daily life, and their value beyond the material level consequently faded out, which incurs a big change of the whole industry. However, different from many old things which fade out of our life, bicycles are endowed with new concept and get new development space in the new times.


In the past years, bicycle industry demonstrates obvious improvement in terms of manufacturing technology, technique, quality of products and automated production level through actively introducing, comprehending and absorbing internationally advanced technologies and equipments. China has become the largest country in terms of manufacturing, consuming and exporting bicycles in the world. Data show that China takes up more than 70 percent in terms of bicycle output and export volume in the world, with the domestic consumptive volume ranking first globally.

 

In 2006, there were 881 national bicycles enterprises and large scale bicycle enterprises, which produced 67,327,000 bicycles and electric bicycles, obtained a total industrial output value of RMB51.83 billion yuan, sales revenue of RMB50.84 billion yuan, and a total profit of RMB1.38 billion yuan. Both the economic and social effects are outstanding.


In fierce competitions, the manufacture and market trend of bicycle industry better suit those free-market regions and companies, and 5 major manufacture bases have been shaped up in Tianjin, Shanghai, Jiangsu, Zhejiang, and Guangdong. The fierce market has fostered many enterprises and brands with great anti-market risk capabilities and core competitiveness. Giant, for instance, has taken the leading position in the industry in terms of market share, brand influence, and customer satisfaction.


The development of bicycle industry is supported by huge demands. As a convenient transportation tool, the bicycle is popular with customers owing to three advantages: The first is price advantage. There are dozens of bicycle brands in domestic market, and the prices are between RMB150-300 yuan, which common people can afford. The second is performance advantage. The bicycle is light, convenient and free. We can ride it on all roads, and park it conveniently. Though many families own private cars, they still need a bicycle. The third is the environmental protection advantage. Bicycles are green products globally, in particular, the newly emerged electric bicycle becomes an internationally recognized "green transportation tool". While the trail gases of cars run wild, the electric bicycle is welcome in many cities in China. There are near 110 enterprises developing electric bicycles in China, and the number is still growing. In many countries in the world, bicycle riding has become the most popular sport except swimming and running. Environmental protection and body-building bring new hope for bicycle industry, which has still powerful vitality.


In terms of new market trend, China's bicycle market still has a rosy prospect. Research data of chnci.com show that at present, the global annual bicycle output is about 120 million to 130 million sets, and the demand is about 100 million to 120 million sets, demonstrating a great momentum both in supply and demand. A questionnaire conducted by China Bicycle Association in Beijing, Shanghai and other regions show that 45.5 percent of answerers "want to buy a bicycle in the near future", 84.2 percent of answerers buy bicycles to use them as transportation tool, 6.4 percent of them for body-building, and 9.4 percent for short-distance transportation. These potential consumers are aged largely 21 to 35, paid below RMB1000 yuan per month. In the whole amount of bicycle in China, 72 percent have been used more than 10 years, most of which have not entered the renewal period. The survey thinks that China's bicycle market will possess a stable consumer group, and with the approaching of the bicycle renewal period, a new round of bicycle purchasing fervor will occur. In addition, for the present and in a long time from now on, the rural bicycle sales market will be the most promising one. Rural residents with low incomes still use bicycle as a major transportation tool. It won't change in a rather long time. Industry insiders predict that till 2010, the sales scale of China's bicycle industry will be RMB80 billion yuan.


Experts pointed that bicycle industry should strengthen structure adjustment and asset reorganization, enhance the brand integrity, and blaze a trail of "amount control, quality improvement, and brand development", thus recover the power of the "bicycle kingdom".

Source:CE.cn 
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