A woman writes out a postcard featuring the Second China International Import Expo in Shanghai on July 25 (XINHUA)
It is less than 100 days before the start of the Second China International Import Expo (CIIE), which will run from November 5-10; but, the residual fervor from last year's maiden expo still hovers over the dog days of summer in Shanghai, China's financial center, as it continues to bring economic benefits to participants through innovative new platforms.
The inaugural CIIE, the world's first import expo, was held last November in the city as part of China's efforts to promote the import of foreign goods in order to both open up wider to international markets and meet domestic demand for high-quality goods. The expo attracted more than 400,000 domestic and overseas purchasers, topping all expectations.
"Last year at the CIIE, our volume of business was 2 million euros ($2.23 million) and we have since accumulated customers who came to us after the expo through this platform," said a representative from the Czech Republic Pavilion at the Greenland Global Commodity Trading Hub (G-hub), an exhibition and trade platform next door to the expo's exhibition center. "So far, the volume of transactions after the First CIIE has hit 3-5 million euros ($3.34-5.57 million)."
To amplify the spillover effects of the First CIIE, platforms such as the G-hub and the Hongqiao Import Commodity Exhibition and Trade Center have been created, which feature a "6+365 days" professional service model, meaning the six days of the expo plus year-round services. Exhibits from the First CIIE or those that did not participate in the event can enter these permanent exhibition and trade platforms for sales.
For example, due to a limited quota, the U.S. manufacturer Stanley Black & Decker will be unable to participate in the Second CIIE. "It is a pity that we can't be in the exhibition center where the expo will be held, but this location is good since buyers and customers can visit our brand here. It is a great opportunity for exposure," Aylin Bagci, the company's Vice President of Commerce for Asia Pacific, told Beijing Review at the G-hub. It also provides opportunities for buyers who fail to attend the CIIE to experience the star products featured at the expo.
Since its establishment in November 2018, the G-hub has handled 350,000 visitors and more than 700 groups of buyers, and has helped match 150 exhibitors with their downstream customers.
Launching our new products at the G-hub before the expo can both let our customers taste the goods in advance and provide opportunities for Malaysian durian-planting companies to make a match with their buyers ahead of time, which helps to warm up the market, Prime Minister of Malaysia's Special Envoy to China Tan Kok Wai, said.
According to Shang Yuying, Deputy Secretary General of the Shanghai Municipal Government, a total of 31 such platforms have attracted 558 exhibitors from the First CIIE with 13,609 kinds of products. By July 15, imports through the platforms had totaled 75.2 billion yuan ($10.9 billion).
"Shanghai is outlining an action plan to make the most of the CIIE by upgrading trade, consumption, opening up, industry and innovation," she said.
(Reporting from Shanghai)
Copyedited by Rebeca Toledo
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