SHANGHAI: Chinese online ad revenues increased by 30% month-on-month in March this year to 608 million yuan ($88.9m; €68.4m; £61.4m), iResearch has found.

As reported in WARC Online's latest Consensus Forecast, China is one of the few ad markets expected to enjoy meaningful growth during 2009.

iResearch found that automotive adspend via the internet increased by 45% to 88.73 million yuan in the country in the first three months of this year.

Other categories posting higher levels of marketing expenditure on the web included the online games sector, up 54% to 79.2 million yuan, and real estate, up 22% to 54.2m.

Xi Guohua, of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology of China, recently reported that the number of domestic internet users rose by 16.2 million to 316 million in the first three months of this year.

He also estimated that Chinese eCommerce sales increased in value by 41.7% last year to 3 trillion yuan, with online adspend expanding by 55.8% to 12 billion yuan, and the internet games sector by 50% to over 19 billion yuan, in the same period.

Data sourced from Interfax China; additional content by WARC staff