CIIE expects greater reception for 2019 edition
A visitor at the booth of Fur Canada during the inaugural China International Import Expo in Shanghai. [Photo/China Daily]
The inaugural China International Import Expo might have ended just over a month ago, but the event's bureau has already signed contracts with more than 100 enterprises for next year's edition, most of which are the world's top 500 companies.
According to the bureau, 80 percent of these confirmed participants will be exhibiting their products and services for the first time.
Held from Nov 5 to 10, the CIIE is the first of its kind in the world where foreign companies are the only sellers and domestic companies and trade missions are the buyers. The value of potential deals struck at the inaugural edition exceeded $57.83 billion, and organizers are already anticipating greater participation from foreign companies next year.
The CIIE reflects Chinese President Xi Jinping's forecast during the opening ceremony of the inaugural expo that China would import more than $30 trillion worth of goods and $10 trillion worth of services in the next 15 years as the nation's citizens continue the pursuit of upgrading their lives.
The plan for the 2019 edition of the expo will remain largely the same as the first, said Sun Chenghai, the deputy director of CIIE Bureau, at a news conference on Dec 22. The event will be held at the same venue — the National Exhibition and Convention Center in Shanghai — and in conjunction with the Hongqiao International Economic and Trade Forum.
The size of business exhibition areas, however, will be increased to meet growing demand by exhibitors, Sun said, adding that more than 100,000 square meters, a quarter of the total exhibition area at the venue, has been reserved. There will also be a new category, called "Quality Life", that will be added in the 2019 edition. This section will include high-end home appliances and household products.
"We hope to promote economic and trade partnerships with more companies in a wider scope and at a higher level," Sun said. "The expo will inject more vitality into the global economy."
In the past month, CIIE organizers have sent delegations overseas to hold roadshows for its second edition. A delegation led by Sun visited the United States, Panama and Brazil while another led by deputy director Liu Fuxue went to Australia, New Zealand and Indonesia. The bureau is also planning to hold roadshows in Europe in January.
On Dec 10, US cosmetic giant Estee Lauder signed a contract with the bureau during its New York roadshow. Estee Lauder's senior vice president and China region general manager, Fan Jiayu, said the company has applied early because it missed the application window for the inaugural edition.
Meanwhile, some of those who had participated in the first expo are already looking to expand their offerings next year. Honeywell China region president Yu Feng said that the company is looking to expand its exhibition space by three times for the second edition of the CIIE.
A secretariat for the union of CIIE exhibitors was set up in December. Its members include dozens of companies participating in the second edition, such as General Motors, L'Oreal, Samsung and Toyota. The secretariat will solicit suggestions from exhibitors and provide advice to the expo organizer.
The registration for the second expo will end on April 30.