Global spotlight to shine on Hainan

2021-5-6 14:25:21

More than 60,000 participants register for international consumer products event, including world-renowned luxury brands

Two weeks after the Boao Forum for Asia Annual Conference 2021, South China's Hainan is to come under the global spotlight again with the opening of the first China International Consumer Products Expo.

From May 7, producers of world-class boutique brands will gather to showcase and debut their latest products and explore future trends and opportunities in the Chinese market, according to the organizers.

To be held at the Hainan International Convention and Exhibition Center in Haikou, capital of the island province of Hainan, the event, also known as the Hainan Expo, is the country's first and only national platform featuring imports of consumer products.

Chinese consumers can enjoy a special policy that waives taxation for purchasing some imported products at the event, said officials with the Hainan provincial government, which is jointly sponsoring the landmark event with the Ministry of Commerce.

Shen Xiaoming, secretary of the Communist Party of China Hainan Provincial Committee, said that the expo will be one of the highest-standard exhibitions in China and is a practical action to implement the CPC Central Committee's strategic plan of comprehensively deepening reform and opening-up in Hainan. He said Hainan is doing its best to ensure service guarantees, and risk prevention and control, and make the expo a grand consumer event with international standards and a global reputation.

Wang Bingnan, vice-minister of commerce, said the event is seen as an important initiative to better meet people's needs and a significant platform to foster a new development paradigm. He said China, considered the world's most promising consumer market, will remain committed to its basic national policy of opening-up and will hold events such as the Hainan expo as platforms to promote domestic consumption, and welcome all countries to share the Chinese market for common global prosperity.

MOC officials said on April 25 that more than 60,000 professional exhibitors, retailers and experts and observers have registered for attendance at the expo. It is expected to be the largest consumer products exposition in the Asia-Pacific region, and about 200,000 visitors are expected from around China.

Representatives of businesses including LVHM Group, Richemont Group, Jaguar Land Rover, Burberry, Shiseido, Omron, Tapestry Group, Johnson & Johnson, Dell, Tesla, Swatch, Swarovski, Coach, and Hans Yachts have arrived in Haikou to attend the grand opening ceremony on Thursday evening, according to the organizing committee.

With a total exhibition area of 80,000 square meters, the expo will feature a rich variety of products, including watches and jewelry, cosmetics and perfumes, alcoholic beverages, garments, gems, food and health products, and automobiles, as well as electronic and cultural goods.

The international boutique exhibition area will cover 60,000 sq m, showcasing boutique products of 1,319 global brands from 69 countries and regions. Switzerland is the guest country of honor. More than 10 countries including Japan, France, South Korea, Canada, Ireland and Thailand have sent delegations to the event, the organizers said.

Domestically, more than 1,200 brands from over 800 companies across 34 provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities have registered to take part. They include consumer goods companies and time-honored brands such as Beijing Tongrentang Group and porcelain from Jingdezhen, Jiangxi province-which was the center of porcelain production in ancient China.

About 70 debut events will be held during the expo. Domestic and foreign duty-free businesses, high-end retailers, large-scale shopping malls, top e-commerce and luxury e-commerce companies will host matchmaking sessions and seek business opportunities, said Han Shengjian, director-general of the Hainan Provincial Bureau of International Economic Development, which oversees the expo.

The construction of the Hainan Free Trade Port has generated widespread interest among renowned international brands from luxury, fast-moving consumer goods to other sectors, according to local officials.

Swiss Ambassador to China Bernardino Regazzoni said the Hainan expo marks a great step in the development of the Hainan FTP and a new step in China's integration into the global economic system.

"The official release of the Overall Plan for the Construction of Hainan Free Trade Port and the upcoming first Hainan Expo further show China's resolute determination of opening wider to the outside world to share development opportunities," said Kentaro Fujiwara, CEO of Shiseido China, which will run a 500 sq m booth during the expo.

Fujiwara said that Shiseido is optimistic about this new opportunity and that the expo will create a global platform for international investors to display and trade consumer products and thus it "will provide new impetus to global consumption growth".

"It is clear that Hainan is going to be a massive game changer for global travel retail with strong government support," said Jonathan Chow, China CEO of AsiaEuro International Beverage.

Gao Hui, China representative of the Tax Free World Association, said that the numerous product debuts set for the expo and plans by international brands to open retail stores in Hainan showed that the global community is confident in the Hainan and Chinese market as a whole. It is also proof they recognize the purchasing power of Chinese consumers.

She suggested that overseas brand producers adjust their marketing and provide more quality products and services to meet the needs of consumers in China.

"The Hainan FTP has unparalleled policy advantages and its business environment has also made great progress, which is of strong appeal to excellent overseas enterprises," said Chen Yonglan, general manager of Eurazeo and president of Eurazeo Asia-Pacific China.

Xia Feng, executive director of the Institute for Advanced Studies of Humanities and Social Sciences at Hainan University, believes that the Hainan Expo will serve as a platform for global consumer product brands to access China's huge consumer market and thus promote China's new development paradigm of "dual circulation".

"Holding the expo, a recurring annual fixture, will further boost opening-up in Hainan and promote solid progress in the Hainan FTP in upgrading its service sectors-the meeting, incentive, conference and exhibition industry, finance, logistics and professional services, to name a few," Xia said. He added that holding the event has remarkably raised the international reputation of Hainan.

Highlighting the country's ongoing efforts to expand its opening-up to the outside world and to boost high-quality growth in the Hainan FTP, the central government has recently launched three packages of special measures. One focuses on relaxing market access in the Hainan FTP, involving sectors such as medicine, healthcare, finance, education, high-tech, culture and new energy vehicles. The other package of guidelines, with 33 detailed measures, has been released to help enhance the Hainan FTP's financial market system, further open up its financial market, enhance innovation, improve financial services and strengthen local financial regulation.

The latest package, with 28 new measures released on April 26, will promote liberalization and assist trade in goods and services, assist the free flow of key production factors, cultivate industries with comparative advantages, and thus generate more opportunities for businesspeople in the Hainan FTP, said officials with the MOC.

Ma Zhiping contributed to this story.

(Source: China Daily)


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