100% stacked bar chart of proportion of world's commodity demand from China.

China's Outsized Demand for Commodities

China's demand for commodities well outstrips its relative population and the size of its economy as shown in this 100% stacked bar chart.  China consumed over 59% of the world's cement, 56% of its nickel and half of its coal, copper and steel.  The Chinese make up only 19% of the world's population and its economy accounts for only 15% of the world's GDP.

China's demand is strong for other commodities as well.  It consumes 47% of the world's pork and aluminum, 33% of its cotton, 31% of its rice, 27% of its gold and 23% of its corn.  Demand for oil, however is relatively low.  China accounts for just 14% of the world's oil consumption.  The data for this chart was compiled by Visual Capitalist from various economic sources.

100% Stacked Bar Chart

100% stacked bar chart of proportion of world's commodity demand from China.

How I Created the 100% Stacked Bar Chart

Visual Capitalist displayed the data as a series of donut charts.  They had charts for each commodity and also for population and GDP.  I thought that a single 100% stacked bar chart would show the relative size of China's demand better.  the chart is ordered from highest proportion of demand to lowest.  I used horizontal lines for population and GDP.  They serve as benchmarks for the demand of each commodity.

Here are the steps I took to create the chart:

  • copied the data from a table on the Visual Capitalist web page into the Mekko Graphics Data Editor
  • removed the columns that were not needed
  • created a column, using a formula, for rest of world demand
  • added ya axis title and removed rest of y axis
  • adjusted chart margins to provide room on right for horizontal line titles
  • added legend and showed at bottom of chart
  • showed percentages in segment labels and removed for rest of world series
  • adjusted colors for segments and lines
  • reduced bar gaps to move bars closer together

Take This Chart and Make It Your Own

Download this chart and edit it using Mekko Graphics or see other bar chart examples.

Here are some other posts that may interest you:

Grocery Price Changes 2007-2017

Worldwide Air Conditioning Capacity