The coronavirus epidemic has rocked international trade and heavily influenced methods of establishing cooperation with China. Chinese trade shows, which gather importers from all around the world every year, since 2020, have been continuously canceled or postponed. Some of them were moved to the online sphere to face up to the new reality. What will the trade fairs in China look like in 2022? Will there be a possibility to attend such events offline?
Trade shows in China are an excellent method to find a business partner. Thus they’re extremely popular. They allow direct, face-to-face contact with suppliers, checking their products’ quality on the spot and negotiating. The year 2021 was promising for Chinese trade fairs. They began returning to their usual forms. Many of such events took place in venues, following the strict rules of the sanitary regime. Meanwhile, the minority of them got canceled or postponed for safety purposes, e.g., Consumer Electronics China (CE) China or Asia-Pacific Outdoor Show. Some fairs had an online form or a hybrid one, connecting the internet and offline spheres. Despite obstacles created by the coronavirus, some technological measures used by organizers of Chinese trade fairs have developed.
What do trade fairs in China currently look like?
Widespread Canton Fair, which in the year 2020 and spring of 2021 was organized in the online form, during the upcoming edition will take place in its venue in Canton. However, the success of the event’s online version made its organizers decide to connect both forms – online and offline. During all three editions of Canton Fair Online, participants could watch products’ live presentations and browse through offers from every industry without the necessity to plan a trip to China.
Another event that will take a hybrid form is a trade fair created with foreign exporters that want to appear in the Chinese market in mind – CIIE. The China International Import Expo will be organized in Shanghai. During this fair, participants will also have an opportunity to use some technologically developed functions. With virtual reality and 3D modeling technologies, the CIIE’s official website will allow one to get acquainted with the exporter’s activities. Over 500 countries will present their offers in virtual pavilions created this way.
The following example is trade fairs organized by HKTDC (Hong Kong Trade Development Council). In 2020, HKTDC Autumn Sourcing Week took place. During this event, the participants could browse items from all industries and take part in online webinars. They also had access to a Click2Match function, which simplified contacting suppliers. The upcoming HKTDC trade fairs are to take place in various forms. For example, HKTDC Watch & Clock Fair was organized both online and offline. Another event – Hong Kong Electronics Fair 2021 will also be held in a venue and its internet version.
One must keep in mind that despite trade fairs’ coming back to Chinese venues, they’re still not accessible to foreign visitors. Since 2020, China has been upholding stringent restrictions concerning entering the country. Those authorized to arrive must undergo 14 up to 21 days lasting quarantine. The limits also include accommodating foreigners in hotels and traveling across China.
Trade fairs in China 2022
After so long, one could expect that trade fairs in China will soon be accessible also to international entrepreneurs. Unfortunately, foreign importers and exporters are likely to wait longer until they can participate in such events. According to predictions, restrictions introduced by CAAC (Civil Aviation Administration of China) are to be in force at least until the end of 2022’s first half.
Currently, China entirely prohibits touristic trips. Only citizens and residents and those with valid visas have access to the country. However, additional measures concerning visa applications have been implemented. This way, China wants to prevent the virus from spreading and the appearance of new variants.
Chinese trade fairs are probable not to be accessible to international importers for a long time. However, it’s worth following the interesting us events and checking on their official websites whether they’ll be available in online form. Trade fairs in the internet version allow us to get acquainted with the Chinese sellers’ offers without the necessity to plan a trip to China. Thanks to such a solution, foreign entrepreneurs also can participate in trade shows and find Chinese suppliers.