At CIIE, foreign enterprises show more interest, confidence in Chinese market

SHANGHAI, Nov. 10 (Xinhua) — Foreign enterprises have shown more interest and confidence in the Chinese market at the third China International Import Expo (CIIE) in Shanghai.

The third CIIE concluded here Tuesday, with deals reached for intended one-year purchases of goods and services totaling 72.62 billion U.S. dollars, up 2.1 percent from the last expo, official data showed.

Though a first-time exhibitor at the CIIE, Air Products, a U.S.-based industrial gases manufacturer, has been in the Chinese market for more than 30 years. The company had already reaped several handsome cooperation agreements in the first two days of the expo.

“The CIIE is such an open and shared platform,” said Saw Choon Seong, China president of Air Products.

The growing desire of Chinese consumers for a better life has attracted more and more foreign businesses to participate in the CIIE, and Skechers is one of them, said Michael Greenberg, president of sportswear giant Skechers.

Hong Chow, CEO of Roche Pharma China, said that the company will continue to work with the Chinese government and various partners.

“We aim to introduce cutting-edge diagnosis and treatment technologies and products into China, fully support the innovation and upgrading of China’s healthcare industry and help Chinese people live a better life,” Chow said.

At the third CIIE, U.S. materials science giant Dow engaged partners from all value chains that Dow focuses on with five MoUs, two global debuts and over 600 solid purchase leads, and received over 40,000 visitors, according to Dow Greater China President Yoke Loon Lim.

“All these contribute tremendously to Dow business and brand building,” Yoke Loon Lim said.

Many enterprises have plans to step up investment and launch new products in China.

Pharmaceutical company AbbVie, which made its debut at the CIIE this year, plans to launch more than 15 new products and 48 indications in China in the next five years and strive to turn AbbVie China into the largest overseas market outside the headquarters, according to AbbVie China General Manager Tony Au.

Pharmaceutical company Boehringer Ingelheim plans to invest an additional 451 million euros in China in the next five years and will participate in the next CIIE in 2021.

Many company executives said that the successful organization of the third CIIE has brought strong confidence to foreign enterprises.

“The successful hosting of 2020 CIIE even in times of the pandemic reflects the Chinese government’s determination and efforts to strengthen opening-up, connecting China with the world,” said Clarence Mak, president of Mars Wrigley China. “Mars will continue to leverage CIIE and the open market in China as a platform to play our part to achieve shared prosperity and progress with the world.”

The CIIE serves as a bridge for global enterprises to directly reach the Chinese market and tap substantial business opportunities, said Deemah Sukhtian, managing director of Munir Sukhtian Group, a Jordanian family business trading in various areas.

“China plays a significant role in global trade and economy, where we’ve been trying to approach and see how we can collaborate on both imports and exports,” Sukhtian said.

“We are delighted that China has maintained its decision to hold the expo on Nov. 5 as scheduled, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, because we consider the third CIIE as a key event for our target country: China,” Serap Unal, deputy secretary general of the Aegean Exporters’ Association, told Xinhua.

Unal indicated that Turkish enterprises value this event highly as it enhances the image of Turkish products among Chinese consumers.

“We have an increasing amount of food product exports to China. In 2015, the amount was 131 million U.S. dollars, while in 2019 we reached 226 million dollars,” she said. “The Chinese market is very important to us.”

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