BEIJING, April 16 (Xinhua) -- China's gold consumption dropped 5.44 percent to 284.97 tonnes in the first quarter of this year due to a carryover effect and a sharp sales decline in gold bars, new data showed Monday.
In the first three months, gold bar sales plunged 27.58 percent year on year to 73.28 tonnes, according to data from the China Gold Association.
Despite the decline, gold consumption still maintained at a relatively high level, said the association.
Bucking the trend, consumption of gold jewelry went up 5.6 percent year on year to 180.5 tonnes, while that for gold coins rose 8 percent to 2.7 tonnes.
Consumption for industrial and other use climbed 6.58 percent to 28.49 tonnes.
In the first quarter, China's gold output went down 2.95 percent year on year to 98.22 tonnes, continuing the declining trend in 2017.
Last year, China's gold output went down 6 percent to 426 tonnes, but it still retained its position as the world's biggest producer for the 11th consecutive year.
China adopted rules in 2016 to raise environmental requirements on solid waste from gold prospecting, leading to a wave of gold mine closures and output declines in the major producing provinces, including Shandong, Jiangxi, and Hunan.