Below is a link to mainstream article that notes the massive Chinese buying of gold.
This is the force driving the rapid price increase of gold Pandas and other Chinese gold and silver coins.
Ken Sweet, contributing writer, On Friday May 20, 2011, 3:47 pm EDT
China edged out India to become the world's largest buyer of investment-grade gold products, according to a World Gold Council report.
In the first quarter, Chinese consumers purchased 90.9 metric tonnes in gold bars and coins, valued at $4.1 billion.
That's more than double the amount Chinese consumers were buying year ago. It's also more than the 85.9 metric tonnes bought by Indian consumers during the first three months of the year.
"Persistent high inflation levels in [both countries] continued to motivate investment in gold," the organization's analysts wrote in a research report.
India still dominates the gold jewelry market, buying 206.2 metric tonnes in the first quarter, compared with China's 142.9 metric tonnes.
China and India account for nearly half of all gold products sold during the first quarter, said the World Gold Council.
"You have a growing middle class that has increasing disposable income that is also concerned about upward inflation pressures," said Carlos Sanchez, a precious metals analyst with independent metals research firm CPM Group.
Sanchez expects China's market to continue to grow noticeably for the foreseeable future as the country's economy expands.