Found this article and thought could be interesting. Gives a decent hint as Merrill Lynch put it out, but one million is not millionaire yet. That´s the lower than average price of condo home, I assume in any metropolitan city. Could be more intersting to find relevant news development of new chinese middle-class as are their entering to serious boating as leisure pleasure
China's boat builders are turning to B.C. yacht engineers and designers in anticipation of a surging demand for luxury craft as the number of wealthy Chinese continues to soar in the world's fastest-growing economy.
Boat builders in China want to partner with B.C. engineers, since Canada is known for producing high-quality yachts, according to Maple Ridge-based Seaforth Marine Group Inc., which provides engineering and consulting for a factory outside of Shanghai.
"It's like a stamp of approval. That's the way they see it," said Dan Beebe, director of sales and marketing for Seaforth.
Yacht production is still relatively new in China, Beebe said, and manufacturers there need an internationally recognized name backing them.
With the help of Seaforth's consultants, the company's Chinese partner builds yachts between 41 feet long to 68 feet, and exports the finished products to Europe and Australia. Australia.
About 40 to 45 per cent of Seaforth's client-base is in Asia, and the company is aiming to expand its presence in China.
"The whole market is booming over there," Beebe said.
While production in China is driven by the low cost of labour, most Chinese boat builders so far only manufacture smaller leisure boats, said Vancouver-based Ivan Erdevicki, president of Ivan Erdevicki Naval Architecture and Design.
Mega-yachts, such as those larger than 70 feet, "require a really high-end finish," Erdevicki said, adding that it will take some time before Chinese builders can compete in the higher-end market.
Erdevicki said he is currently designing production-line leisure boats for two clients, who aim to build them in China.
The two models are expected to be on the market by 2007 and 2008, and Erdevicki said he would typically expect to receive royalties of at least 1.5 per cent for every boat built.
An average 50-foot yacht costs about $1.5 million U.S., and an engineer's earnings could add up if the manufacturer is able to produce multiple boats, he said.
Despite a rapidly growing yacht manufacturing industry and a proliferation of status-conscious millionaires, China does not yet have a significant domestic market for leisure boats.
Industry experts say the culture has not fully adopted the concept of yachting. But several factors are expected boost domestic demand in coming years.
China is planning several marina development projects, especially near Hong Kong and Shanghai, and the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing is also expected to fuel interest in boating sports.
There are now more than 300,000 Chinese people with a net worth of at least $1 million US (excluding property), according to Merrill Lynch & Co. After years of deprivation, the wealthy are snapping up luxury cars and brand name items at an unprecedented rate.
"The wealth [in China] is growing all the time," said Patrick Bray, president of White Rock-based Bray Yacht Design and Research.
"It's certainly an area we want to explore into more and more," he said, noting that Chinese buyers are more inclined to purchase yachts made in North America.
Although Bray is optimistic of the growth opportunities in China, he acknowledged that his company's earlier foray into country was less than successful. Plans that he developed with a Chinese manufacturer to build boats there was cancelled after the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre, and were never revisited.
"It gave me a better understanding," he said, reflecting on the impact the scrapped venture had on his impression of China's business climate. But, he added: "I still think China is pretty stable."