CIIE organizers bullish on 2021 event

Officials: Prestigious annual trade expo to boost confidence in global economy

The fourth China International Import Expo will open in Shanghai on Nov 5 and is expected to continue to inject vitality into the global economy, said its organizers 100 days before it gets underway.
Sun Chenghai, deputy director-general of the CIIE Bureau, said the success of organizing the expo last year amid the COVID-19 pandemic boosted confidence in the world economy.
"This year's expo will strive to become a window for China's new development pattern and contribute to promote an open global economy," Sun said.
Sun added that the expo's business exhibition will be 360,000 square meters, allowing thousands of exhibitors from around the world to meet tens of thousands of domestic buyers.
"Around 80 percent of our exhibitors are repeat exhibitors, and there are also new faces-this year's new exhibitors include 30 Fortune 500 companies and industrial pacesetters," he said.
Green products and low-carbon development will be highlighted at this year's expo with a special committee formed by exhibitors involved in the new energy sector and carbon reduction technologies, and a new zone to display their related products has been set up.
Trade promotion agencies from Japan, Poland, Denmark and New Zealand have expanded their exhibition scale, and will invite more small and medium-sized enterprises featuring their own country's unique products to participate in the expo, Sun said.
"The world's Top 10 carmakers, cosmetics groups and industrial electrical equipment companies will all meet here in Shanghai in November," he added.
The bureau has organized 10 roadshows across the country-including trips to Changsha, Hunan province, and Chengdu, Sichuan province-and arranged matchmaking sessions for consumer goods, foodstuffs, agricultural products as well as healthcare and medical equipment.
"We will invite more professional visitors and precisely pair exhibitors and buyers so as to make doing business easier," Sun said, adding that the bureau has published information on 264 exhibits from 64 exhibitors on the expo's website.
In addition to business exhibitions, more than 50 countries have confirmed plans to open virtual pavilions on the expo's official website to introduce their leading industries. Offline activities will also be organized by related parties during the expo.
As part of the event, the Hongqiao International Economic Forum will be themed around global economic cooperation in the post-pandemic era, and many sub-forums will be held on building a new development paradigm and global governance in sectors such as public health, climate change and digital economy.
Gu Honghui, deputy secretary-general of the Shanghai municipal government, said the city government will hold two sub-forums-one on the high-level opening-up of the Pudong New Area and the other on the Hongqiao International Hub for opening-up and regional integrated development.
"We should make full use of the CIIE and the Hongqiao forum as platforms to make Shanghai a distribution center of goods from the Yangtze River Delta region, across the country and connecting the Asia-Pacific region," Gu said.
To expand the spillover effect of the expo, Shanghai has built 56 year-round exhibition centers to display nearly 180,000 CIIE exhibits from 1,390 exhibitors.
Zhou Lan, deputy director of the municipal commerce commission, said CIIE exhibitors have also become investors since the expo's first edition in 2018.
"From 2018 to June, Shanghai has witnessed the signing of 328 investment projects worth $60.35 billion, including Legoland Shanghai and AstraZeneca's global research and development center," Zhou said.
Jean-Philippe Poulin, president of Lesaffre China, who has participated in the expo since its inception, said the expo is not only an ideal platform to showcase innovative products, but also a place to learn about the good practices in the Chinese market.
"I will go to the company's headquarters in France soon, and I will bring back the knowledge learned from China-the agility, flexibility and adaptability to market change is something the Chinese people could share with the rest of the world," he said.
"I will definitely try to come to the expo in November."

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