Shanghai City Review


About This Report

Mar 2017

Already a leading global manufacturing centre, and the busiest global container port, Shanghai has recently strived to emerge as a global financial centre. With a population of 25.2 million in 2016, it was the most populous Chinese city, and boasted one of the highest levels of household disposable income in China (USD26,800). This makes the city the largest consumer market in China, of USD180 billion in 2016, and likely to hit USD240 billion at constant 2016 prices in 2021.

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Shanghai City Review


The city features a significant concentration of high valued-added business services, excellent infrastructure and a well-educated labour force. As a result, Shanghai's labour productivity (USD28,500) was double the country's average in 2016. However, it lagged behind Guangzhou (USD35,000), Beijing (USD30,300), Wuhan (USD30,200), Tianjin (30,000), and Shenzhen (USD28,500) in this measure.

Higher disposable income

By disposable income (USD26,800 in 2016), Shanghai ranks ahead of all the other five cities mentioned above. However, the spread above the country's average was only 78%, compared with 102% higher per-employee labour productivity. This is partly explained by Shanghai's smaller average household size (2.3 versus 3.0 in the rest of the country in 2016) and a lower labour force participation rate (71% versus China's average of 81% in 2016).

Greater spending on recreation and culture, and hotels and restaurants

Consumer expenditure per household (excluding transport and housing) in Shanghai was 84% greater than in the rest of the country in 2016. This reflects significantly higher spending in categories such as recreation and culture and hotels and restaurants, witnessing Shanghai's position as a popular tourist destination as well.

High housing and transport expenses

Sharp rises in real estate prices and high congestion have driven up spending on housing and transport in Shanghai. Measured per household, it exceeded that of the rest of the country by 58% in 2016 - a moderate premium considering the 74% higher disposable income, however.


Understanding Shanghai Review structure
Chart 1 Overview
Key facts on Shanghai
Summary 1 Key Facts On Shanghai 2011, 2016, 2021


Delimitation of the metropolitan region
Chart 2 Map Of Shanghai Metropolitan Area
Main business districts


Industrial make-up
Chart 3 Industrial Composition Of Shanghai 2016
Chart 4 Labour Productivity: Selected Cities 2016
Recent developments and outlook
Chart 5 Dynamics Of Real GDP In Shanghai, China And Other Cities In Asia, 2011-2021
Summary 2 Labour Market Changes In Shanghai 2011, 2016


City demographics
Chart 6 Population By Age 2016
Chart 7 Drivers Of Population Growth In Shanghai 2011-2016
Household income
Chart 8 Household Distribution By Income In Shanghai 2016 And 2021


Structure of household budget
Chart 9 Comparison Of Household Expenditure In Shanghai And China, 2016
Summary 3 Shanghai Household Budget Structure By Consumer Expenditure Item, % of total, 2011, 2016, 2021
City lifestyle
Country's Top Tourism Destination For Foreigners
Biking Revival In Shanghai
City affordability
Chart 10 Household Expenditure On Housing: Selected Cities 2016
Chart 11 Household Expenditure On Transport: Selected Cities 2016



Summary 4 GDP Development, 2011, 2016, 2021
Summary 5 GDP By Origin, Current Prices, US$, Million, 2011-2016
Summary 6 Population And Labour Force, 2011-2016
Summary 7 Employed Population By Economic Sector, % of total, 2011-2016
Summary 8 Population By Sex And Broad Age Groups, ‘000, 2011-2016
Summary 9 Population Growth, 2011-2016
Summary 10 Forecast Population Growth
Summary 11 Population By Educational Attainment, 2011-2016
Summary 12 Structure Of Consumer Expenditure By Main Category, 2011-2016
Summary 13 Consumer Expenditure By Main Category, Per Household, Constant (2016) Prices, US$, 2011, 2016, 2021
Summary 14 Households By Income Band, % Of Total, Constant (2016) Prices 2011, 2016, 2021
Summary 15 Households By Income Band, ‘000, Current Prices 2011-2016
Summary 16 Inflation, 2011-2016
Summary 17 Transport Indicators, 2011-2016
Summary 18 Air Pollution, Concentration In Micrograms Per Cubic Metre, 2011-2016
Summary 19 Possession of Consumer Durables, % of Households, 2011, 2016, 2021