Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is one of the main contributors to the global burden of disease. The aim of this systematic review was to quantify the disease burden of COPD in China and to determine the risk factors of the disease. The number of studies included in the review was 47 with an average quality assessment score of 7.70 out of 10. Reported COPD prevalence varied between 1.20% and 8.87% in different provinces/cities across China. The prevalence rate of COPD was higher among men (7.76%) than women (4.07%). The disease was more prevalent in rural areas (7.62%) than in urban areas (6.09%). The diagnostic rate of COPD patients in China varied from 23.61% to 30.00%. The percentage of COPD patients receiving outpatient treatment was around 50%, while the admission rate ranged between 8.78% and 35.60%. Tobacco exposure and biomass fuel/solid fuel usage were documented as two important risk factors of COPD. COPD ranked among the top three leading causes of death in China. The direct medical cost of COPD ranged from 72 to 3,565 USD per capita per year, accounting for 33.33% to 118.09% of local average annual income. The most commonly used scales for the assessment of quality of life (QoL) included Saint George Respiratory Questionnaire, Airways Questionnaire 20, SF-36, and their revised versions. The status of QoL was worse among COPD patients than in non-COPD patients, and COPD patients were at higher risks of depression. The COPD burden in China was high in terms of economic burden and QoL. In view of the high smoking rate and considerable concerns related to air pollution and smog in China, countermeasures need to be taken to improve disease prevention and management to reduce disease burdens raised by COPD.