India has long been buying gold at incredible levels, but today it appears that China may well be the next king of all gold consuming nations according to a press release from the World Gold Council. Statistics show that China is a growing nation where gold investors are plentiful and a strong demand for gold consumer jewelry means that the nation is rapidly closing in on the top spot. In the first quarter of 2012 alone, Forbes reported that China consumed a whopping 255.2 metric tons of gold.

For investors, news like this speaks of gold prices rising in the long term because both India and China are two world economies that are expected to grow massively in the coming decade. With demand in China rising by a full 10% so far this year, and the Asian country's noted distrust of the dollar, many believe that further intakes of gold are going to create a level of scarcity that will help prices of the precious metal to rise. Those buying gold to strengthen their portfolios today would be in a good position to profit from that type of rise in prices.

While economists say that China's unparalleled economic growth over the past decade can not continue forever, it is still held that it will grow at a faster rate than countries in Europe or North America. Still, many do wonder if it can actually surpass India in terms of gold consumption.

The Managing Director of Investments at the World Gold Council, Marcus Grubb, had this to say, "As we previously forecast it is likely China will become the largest source of demand for gold in 2012."

Commentators throughout the global media echoed the director's sentiments, saying that it gives "gold bugs" a reason to celebrate their particular choice in precious metals.

Grubb elaborated further, saying, "This growth story also extends to other emerging market economies and is reinforced by central banks' continued buying of gold, as a diversifier and a preserver of national wealth.".

When nations are looking to gold as a way to preserve their wealth, even in a global marketplace with plenty of other options, it certainly speaks to gold's resilience and continued place as a marker of value and a strong asset, investment experts say. Between China and India alone, demand can be expected to remain both strong and consistent, something that can certainly help investors feel more comfortable about gold as a holding.

It should be noted that only a little over decade ago the picture of the global economy looked much different. Before the massive growth of tech companies and internet startups with billion dollar IPO's, gold was considered a strong asset. Today, years later, while so much has changed in global economies and many economic catastrophes have come and gone, gold remains a solid asset choice. This speaks to the precious metal's resiliency and bodes well for those that have decided it is the choice for their portfolios, no matter whether they live in the United States, Europe, China, India or anywhere else.