UPDATE 1-China eyes 450 T gold output in 2015, consumption to rise
* China gold output seen reaching 420-450 T by 2015
* Gold consumption expected to hit 1,000 T in 2015
SHANGHAI, Nov 26 (Reuters) - Top gold producer China aims to produce between 420 and 450 tonnes of the precious metal in 2015, up about 25 percent from 2011, while consumption may reach 1,000 tonnes by then, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology said on Monday.
China is already the main consumer of a range of commodities, including copper, coal and iron ore, and the world's second-largest gold consumer after India has to import large quantities of bullion to satisfy domestic demand.
"The short supply for gold in China will last in the coming years," the MIIT said in a statement, adding that China aims to produce 1,900 to 2,100 tonnes of gold between 2011 and 2015, up more than 30 percent from the preceding five years.
However, a series of obstacles such as the fragmented distribution of resources, high costs and low grades could weigh on output growth, the MITT said.
It gave no further details, but said that China aimed to keep unmined gold resources at 8,000 to 9,000 tonnes by 2015, up more than 20 percent from 2010. China produced 288 tonnes of gold for the first nine months, up 11.3 percent from a year ago.
Gold demand in the country is expected to grow 1 percent this year to a record of around 860 tonnes, the global head of metals at consultancy Thomson Reuters GFMS said, with both jewellery and investment sales rising. (Reporting by Ruby Lian, Writing by Lewa Pardomuan; Editing by Jacqueline Wong)
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