The bi-annual Canton Fair is the largest trade fair in China and attracts more than 400,000 visitors every year. Given its position as a major Asian business and exhibition center, Guangzhou should continue to generate a steady stream of business visitors.
“It’s a one-stop shop – you don’t have to travel to all of the countries to meet these buyers,” says Myles Matthews, president of the Global Trade and Technology Center, a trade-promotion group in New York.
The fair is “an important tool for New York City businesses who are trying to leverage the opportunities and resources unique to China,” says Ann Li, executive director of the Center for Economic Transformation in the New York City Economic Development Corporation.
“Clearly, New York businesses seeking to expand need to at least consider how China and Chinese partners fit into their expansion plans,” she says.
China has exerted increased efforts in expanding trade with developing countries like Brazil and Russia. Prime Minister Wen Jiabao has recently proposed a free trade pact between China and Mercosur, a political and economic agreement among Venezuela, Uruguay, Paraguay, Brazil and Argentina. China seeks to double its yearly trade with Latin America to US$400 billion over the following five years.
Russia is considered the most important strategic partner of China, and trade relations between the two nations are still buoyant. Trade between them reached about US$80 billion last year, and they plan to hit the US$200 billion mark by 2020.