6 charts that explain the business in China

How I spent my summer with the Economist? After three months’ reading, researching and prototyping, I created these 6 charts to include in our special report — “Back to business”. Behind these 6 charts is hundreds of pages of research memo and days and nights back and forth. Charts can tell stories. I learned a ton from Vijay Vaitheeswaran. We debated about the way to present a single chart or methodologies to analyze the data. This summer internship is the one I will forever grateful for. Read more about what I learned from this internship here.

CHART1. Where should intrepid marketers go to capitalize on these riches? The wealthy east coast is now widely believed to be saturated, which suggests that firms should head inland.

CHART 2. In 2014, Chinese investment overseas almost caught up with foreign direct investment in China.

CHART3. The number of patents filed has soared thanks to government incentives, but many are worthless. After adjusting for quality, using a range of criteria, China still lags.

CHART4. In 2010 mainstream consumers — those with enough money to buy cars, fridges and phones but not Rolls-Royces — made up less than a tenth of urban households. In a new forecast, McKinsey predicts that by 2020 they will make up well over half.

CHART5. China has millions of successful private-sector businesses. Its internet companies are among the world’s biggest. The fortunes of its 200-plus billionaires were earned in a range of industries.

CHART6. On closer inspection the SOEs’ achievements look less impressive. The private sector, it turns out, is responsible for perhaps two-thirds of all economic output today.