Business / Markets

Gold-investment demand in China 'to rise 10%'

(Agencies) Updated: 2012-06-11 10:54

Gold-investment demand in China may gain more than 10 percent this year as buyers seek a haven from Europe's debt crisis and the prospect of weakening currencies, Bloomberg reported Monday.

"Investors here want to hold part of their assets in gold to hedge for the risks, especially now that the financial crisis has evolved into a sovereign crisis," Bloomberg reported, citing Zheng Zhiguang, general manager of the precious-metals department at Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Ltd.

China will topple India this year as the largest bullion market as rising incomes bolster demand, according to the World Gold Council. Gold may gain for a 12th year in 2012 as European policy makers strive to avoid a breakup of the eurozone and the US Federal Reserve weighs more stimulus to aid the recovery.

Investors in China, facing lackluster equity markets and property curbs, are looking more to the metal, Zheng said on June 6.

Investment demand in China was a record 98.6 metric tons in the first quarter, 13 percent higher the same period in 2011, according to figures from the producer-funded council.

Last year, it climbed 38 percent to 258.9 tons compared with 2010, as overall demand gained 20 percent to 769.8 tons. China's total gold demand may reach 1,000 tons this year, the World Gold Council has said.

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