China, Korea, India, Indonesia and Thailand posted strong annual growth rates and an increase in market shares from 1999, Dataquest reported on Thursday.
China was the largest PC market in Asia--excluding Japan--last year, accounting for 37.8 percent of the regional market. It recorded an annual growth of 32.8 percent to 6.56 million units.
The next largest market was Korea, with a 20.6 percent market share, or 3.57 million units. The country recorded the highest year-over-year growth with 75.6 percent.
PC shipments in Australia and Taiwan declined 1.5 percent to 2.06 million units, and 5.5 percent to 1.08 million units, respectively. Australia and Taiwan were the third and fourth largest markets.
Of Australia, Dataquest said: "Despite aggressive pricing among the major vendors in the month of December, the lingering effects of the Olympics, unfavorable exchange rates, and rising petrol prices--in the later part of 2000--resulted in a cautious buying environment there."
Lower information technology spending in the government and education segments and the lack of economic policy to encourage PC purchases contributed to negative growth for Taiwan, the research firm noted. China's leading PC manufacturer, Legend, seized the largest regional market share of 10.5 percent in 2000. It registered a growth of 88.6 percent, or 1.82 million units, compared with sales in 1999.
Next in line was Samsung Electronics, which recorded an 8.4 percent market share with 1.46 million units. The company recorded a PC shipment growth of 86.6 percent.
IBM came in third with an 8.1 percent market share, recording an annual growth of 27.9 percent to 1.4 million units. In 1999, Big Blue was ahead of China's Legend.
"With the exception of Dell, non-U.S. companies performed better," Dataquest said. Dell recorded 68.9 percent growth, with 671,051 units shipped last year.
"China's entry into the World Trade Organization (WTO) may introduce more PC vendors into the market and increase competition," said Dataquest Senior Analyst Lillian Tay. "It is therefore imperative that existing vendors have a concrete business strategy and invest to grow countrywide."
Singapore.CNET.com's Michelle Tan reported from Singapore.