CIIE offers strong sense of gain

At the CIIE Consumer Electronics & Appliances exhibition area, a staff of an American company introduces smart cooking utensils and related products that can meet diverse user demands. (Photo by Ma Sichao from People’s Daily)

Both exhibitors and buyers have obtained the sense of gain at the ongoing first China International Import Expo (CIIE) in Shanghai.

The exhibition booth of SKK, a cooking utensils producer from Germany, was flooded with visitors. The company signed contracts worth $97.3 million with nine new partners on Nov. 7 alone, according to Zhao Tianping, SKK’s agent in the Greater China.

Cargill, a US provider of food, agriculture and industrial products, started preparation for the CIIE as early as one year ago, and has held an activity when the event began its 100-day countdown.

Cargill signed cooperative agreements of $2.4 billion with a number of Chinese companies on Nov. 5, the first day of the CIIE. These contracts covered a wide range of areas including beef, cereals, food ingredients, cotton and iron ores.

China will continue to broaden market access, said President Xi Jinping when addressing the opening ceremony of the CIIE. In the coming 15 years, China’s import of goods and services are expected to exceed $30 trillion and $10 trillion respectively, Xi announced.

On the afternoon of Nov. 7, a large number of journalists crowded a company booth and turned their cameras towards a 10-karat emerald.

Zambia is the world’s second largest producer of high quality emeralds which are highly transparent and green, said Winnie Natala Chibesakunda, Zambian Ambassador to China, promoting the country’s specialty.

After visiting some Zambian booths at the expo, Ambassador Chibesakunda was told by Zambian entrepreneurs that they had received many orders, and would share the joy with their peers when coming back to Zambia.

Without the market, it will be hard to advance the industrialization in Africa, and China provides a broad market and many development opportunities for the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Zambia, said the Ambassador.

She believed that more Zambian SMEs would participate in the import expo next year, and also suggested that the Zambian government build a national exhibition pavilion at the 2019 CIIE so as to make the Zambian enterprises and products more visible.

Ethiopian merchant Dejen Meskel said he has established relationships with not only Chinese businessmen, but also those from other countries. Purchasers from Ukraine, the United Arab Emirates and Mexico all showed great interest in his agricultural products and he would surely come to the import expo the next year, he told People’s Daily.

“It is proved that the CIIE has promoted global trade liberalization and facilitation, helping us save time and costs, and more importantly, gain more benefits,” said Meskel.

The outcome of the CIIE was beyond expectation, many participants to the event told People’s Daily. Meskel, who often travels to agricultural products trade fairs around the world, said that the business opportunities created by the CIIE were unprecedented. He noted that he would do a research on Chinese purchasers’ demand, believing the performance of his company will embrace a steady growth.

After coming to China, Meskel learnt that China’s openness is wider than what he had heard before. A higher level of opening up proposed by President Xi will provide more opportunities for other countries, said Meskel, adding that Ethiopian enterprises will definitely ride on the train of China’s development.