BEIJING - China's Commerce Minister Chen Deming said Monday that China is expected to become the world's largest consumer market in 2015.
The volume of consumer retail sales will surpass $5 trillion in 2015 amid an accelerated urbanization rate and the rise of people's incomes, Chen said at the opening ceremony of the first Beijing International Fair for Trade in Service.
The number of outbound tourists is expected to reach 88 million at that time, he said.
Demand for home services, education and training, medical care, financing, technology and tourism is booming, he said.
China currently ranks fourth in the world in terms of service trade volume, with $419.1 billion in 2011 compared with $66 billion in 2000.
Hosted by the Ministry of Commerce and the Beijing municipal government, the Beijing Fair, akin to China's major commodities fair, the Canton Fair, attracted more than 22,000 service providers from 82 countries and regions to foster trade in the sector for the coming five days.