Rising prosperity in the cities could make China an attractive market in the future for American goods, according to a U.S. Census Bureau statistical brief.
"China's urban areas, where transportation links are good, access to markets is high and incomes are growing rapidly, have half again as many people as the entire U.S. population," the report said.
Half of China's population of more than 1 billion is under age 21, but efforts to reduce fertility mean that the average will rise rapidly in coming years, the study said. A large share is in the 15-to-64 age group, prime spending years, the study added.
Chinese family size is declining, and the country has the world's highest rate of female participation in the labor force of any major nation, resulting in a large number of two-income families.
The bureau said"all indications are that overall consumption should continue to expand by 3% to 5% each year."