Two pandas welcome visitors to the first China International Import Expo in Shanghai, on Nov 4, 2018. (Xinhua)
The second China International Import Expo (CIIE), scheduled for Nov 5-10 in Shanghai, continues to draw worldwide attention, with enterprises from Europe, the United States, and Australia set to take part at the event, according to a People's Daily report.
More than 500 companies from over 40 countries and regions have signed agreements to attend this year's expo, which will cover a total area of 300,000 square meters – 30,000 square meters larger than the inaugural event.
Mike Arand, New Zealand Trade & Enterprise adviser, said companies from New Zealand had a successful first expo and are looking forward to exploring further market opportunities at this year's event.
The Chinese Chamber of Commerce in New Zealand has booked more than 1,000 square meters in booth space, he said.
Andrew Robertson, Australian Pork senior policy analyst, said the expo has provided opportunities for Australian enterprises to engage with Chinese consumers and importers, although Australian pork is yet to enter the Chinese mainland market.
Robertson further said that China's reform and opening-up has promoted the economic development of the whole world.
This March 40 Japanese small and medium enterprises attended the 29th East China Fair in Shanghai as a rehearsal for the second CIIE, said the director of Japan's pavilion at the fair. Half of the attending enterprises were attracted by the first import expo, he said.
Meanwhile Pirelli CEO Marco Tronchetti Provera said China has made a fortune for itself and the whole world since its reform and opening-up, and has made great advances in electric vehicles and autonomous driving.
The import expo is a great opportunity to display China's opening-up and will also contribute to world trade growth, he said.
Promotions in the regions of Hong Kong and Macao in February aimed to build on the expo's successes last year, with 148 Hong Kong and 54 Macao businesses reaching trade volumes of $1.7 billion and $25.5 million, respectively, in 2018.
A delegation promoting the second CIIE was welcomed in Hong Kong and Macao with hundreds of trade representatives attending a preliminary event. The delegation also visited Australia, Japan, Italy, the United States, Brazil and Indonesia to encourage participation, according to an organizers' report.
New for this year CIIE will establish a luxury goods section. "Luxury goods consumption grows faster in China than in any other country," said Zhou Lingyan, an official at the China International Import Expo Bureau, adding that the exhibition area for luxury goods will reach 10,000 square meters.
Bai Ming, director of the Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation of the Ministry of Commerce, said that the expo has provided a platform for global enterprises.
"It is hard for foreign goods to meet Chinese consumers directly given the country's large population, and the import expo thus provides a precious platform connecting overseas goods and Chinese consumers."