Press Release of the Concluding Press Conference of the 123rd Session of the Canton Fair

The concluding press conference of the 123rd session of the Canton Fair was held in the Canton Fair Complex on May 5. Xu Bing, Spokesperson of the Canton Fair and Deputy Director General of China Foreign Trade Centre introduced the general situation of this session to journalists from home and abroad.

Xu introduced that the 123rd Canton Fair was the first Canton Fair held after the 19th National Congress of CPC; it was also held during the occasion of 40th anniversary of China’s reform and opening up. Therefore this is significant session. With the attention and care of the central government, the State Council, with the support and the leadership of the Ministry of Commerce, Guangdong Province and Guangzhou municipal government, guided by Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, we’ve studied and implemented instructions of the 19th National Congress, carried out the new concepts of development and stuck to the principle of high quality development. We have improved specialization, market orientation, information application and globalization, played a better role of Canton Fair as an all-round platform for opening up, and made new contributions to the development of an open Chinese economy and the establishment of an economic and trade power.

Xu said that during this Canton Fair, all parties’ focused on high quality development. Exhibitors achieved progress in new product research and development, brand cultivation and diversified market exploration; we’ve obtained remarkable results in building Smart Canton Fair and Green Canton Fair. With the concerted efforts of our staff, the 123rd Canton Fair went on smoothly and we reached our goals.

Xu introduced that by May 3, buyer attendance totaled 203,346 from 214 countries (regions), up by 5.3% over the 121st session and the highest in the recent 5 years.

In terms of buyer attendance of all continents in descending order, the number of buyers from Asia totaled 112,585, taking up 55.37% of the total; Europe 34,830, accounting for 17.13%; Americas 33,426, accounting for 16.44%; Africa 15,888 with 7.81% share, and Oceania 6,617 with 3.25% share.

Buyer attendance of all continents experienced growth. Compared with the 121st session, buyer attendance from Americas increased by 12.76%, from Europe increased by 8.07%, Africa up by 4.19%, Oceania up by 4.19% and Asia increased by 2.29%.

Buyer attendance from China’s top 10 trading partner countries and regions in 2017 accounted for 61.44% of the total. The number of buyers from countries in the “Belt and Road Initiative” stood at 90,576, up by 3.86%.

Buyer attendance of the top 20 countries and regions accounted for 61% of the total. The top 10 countries and regions in terms of buyer attendance are Hong Kong, India, the United States, South Korea, Taiwan Province, Thailand, Russia, Malaysia, Australia and Japan.

Altogether 1,076 international chain companies attended the Fair. 109 out of the Top 250 Global Retailers in 2017 attended the Fair. Among them there were 5 of the Top 10 retailers: Wal-Mart, Carrefour, Schwarz Group, Amazon, and Aldi. 8 multinational companies from 6 countries signed up for the Multinational Sourcing Service, including Harbor Freight (the US), Lifetime Brands (the US), Staples (the US), Lock& Lock (South Korea), Kesko Group (Finland), Kawan Lama Group (Indonesia), Taurus Group (Spain), and Auchan Retail (France).

Regular buyers with more than 10 times’ attendance totaled 50,758, up by 3.77%.

Buyer attendance proportion in terms of industries is: electronics and household electrical appliances accounting for 39.38% of the total, daily consumer goods 31.81%, home decorations 28.34%, gifts 27.42%, and machinery 25.88%.

By May 3, the accumulated export transaction of this session totaled 189.197 billion RMB Yuan (or 30.08 billion US dollars), an increase of 3.1 % over the 121st session, the highest among all spring sessions in 4 years.
Machinery and electrical products contributed to the highest transaction, at 15.89 billion USD, accounting for 52.8%; transaction volume of light industrial products stood at 8 billion USD, up by 7.6% and accounting for 26.6% of the total; textile and garment 1.42 billion USD, up by 4.1% and accounting for 4.7%.

The transaction volume in brand zone reached 10.7 billion US dollars, accounting for 33.5% of the total.

The transaction with the “Belt and Road” countries totaled 9.67 billion dollars, a year-on-year increase of 8.8% and accounting for 32.2% of the total.

Of all orders, the proportion of mid- and short-term orders was high while that of long-term orders was low. 42.4% are short-term orders within 3 months, 36.6% are mid-term orders covering 3-6 months and 20.9% are long-term orders over 6 months.

In this session, we’ve improved Canton Fair’s comprehensive functions such as networking, industrial communication, trade matchmaking, design guidance, new product release and branding; local commerce departments of all regions and exhibitors have also made use of this comprehensive platform and enhanced their competitiveness. Exhibitors focused on the supply side, led industrial transformation and upgrading with innovation, and considered innovation as the first engine for high quality development. They have made innovation in research and development, design and business mode and presented more and more products that were smart, custom-made and green and low carbon and of self-owned brands and IP. Companies with new competitive advantages of foreign trade enjoyed noticeable achievements in export and “Made in China” gained more and more popularity. Exhibitors have also diversified their markets, namely consolidated traditional markets, explored emerging ones and looked for potential ones. With consumers’ demand as their priority they’ve developed products that meet the market demands, enriched product contents and enhanced core competitiveness of “Made in China”.

Xu pointed out that Canton Fair made a better use of domestic and international markets and resources; it has become an all-round platform for opening up which allows “selling to and buying from the globe”. Firstly, enhanced function to increase export. Through optimizing the structure of exhibitors, products and sections, and improving targeted marketing, invitation and services to buyers, we’ve increased export transaction. Secondly, enhanced function of import promotion. In this session, the International Pavilion introduced industrial products with high technological content and consumer products that meet the demands of the Chinese market. Industrial leaders from the US, Japan, and famous household appliance brands from the Belt and Road countries witnessed remarkable results. National delegations of Thailand and Nepal attracted huge attention from domestic buyers and media for their first appearance. Japan’s Timelab, South Korea’s NUC and Aquapick have addressed the “last mile problem” entering the Chinese market through the International Pavilion. Exhibitors from Egypt and India reached long-term cooperative content with Chinese companies; Indian delegation received over 300 buyers from home and abroad and reached cooperative content with 50 companies. We held the International Pavilion’s partners selection and networking event, Malaysia delegation opening ceremony and trade matchmaking event between Malaysian exhibitors and Chinese buyers. These activities provided an efficient platform for communication and helped enterprises from home and abroad develop cooperative resources and explore the Chinese and global market. Thirdly, an important channel for meeting new customers. During this session, the number of new buyers amounted to 84,406, a year-on-year increase of 4.99%. Canton Fair serves as the main channel for Chinese exporters to meet their clients; for some exhibitors, more than 80% of their clients are known through the Canton Fair. Fourthly, better results achieved in promoting local industry with features. At this Canton Fair we’ve worked with Guangzhou, Tianjin, Meishan, Taizhou, Qingdao, Chengdou, Hebei and other localities and held multiple promotion conferences of local featured industries. We’ve also organized 6 regional industrial clusters to participate and made use of the vast amount of domestic and international resource, encouraged local featured industries, companies and brands to take part in global competition outstanding companies and brands to the world. These efforts have promoted the development of local economy and received great appraisal from these localities, exhibitors and buyers. Fifthly, lead high quality development with innovation and design.Through design display, design matchmaking and Canton Fair Design Awards, Canton Fair has been leading and encouraging exhibitors to enhance their product design and innovation capacity. In this session 102 design agencies were consulted 16,858 times on design service, 27% of which are projects to follow up, showing active exchange with exhibitors and design agencies. CF Awards have played a bigger role in setting up examples of innovative products and brands for exhibitors. The awards winning products have attracted huge attention from buyers and witnessed brisk transaction. Sixthly, enhanced function of industrial exchange. In this session we held 63 conferences and forums, with 8 themes such as international market, industrial summit, brand marketing, trend, design and innovation, etc; a total sum of over 5500 audiences attended these forums. We held Canton Fair (Latin America) International Market Forum, Kesko Multinational Sourcing Seminar. These forums provided consulting services of higher level and greater strategic value for enterprises to develop the global market.

Xu introduced that in this session we have continued to build Smart Canton Fair, providing all-round smart services for exhibitors and buyers. We upgraded the wifi the Area A of the Canton Fair Complex, extending the wifi coverage rate to 95% and increasing the speed by nearly one time; therefore the network service has been more smooth and stable. We’ve added a crowd heat map in the big data board, showing Canton Fair in all respects in data and providing data reference for attendees. We’ve introduced new technology in smart badge application and streamlined the pre-application procedures on BEST platform to increase the efficiency of buyer badge application. We’ve improved exhibitors and products search system; by May 4, over 250,000 guests from 220 countries and regions visited the exhibitors and products system, with a daily visit of over 22,000 times. Highlight Products attracted great attention and promoted brand companies to explore the international market.

Xu mentioned that in this session we’ve maintained the progress made in green development and pressed ahead Canton Fair Green Development Plan 2.0. More efforts have been made in the brand promotion of green booths, material usage, design and innovation, standard setting and industrial coordination of green development. We held the selection of Green Booth Awarding Ceremony for the first time to award the winners of green booths in the 122nd Canton Fair, and launched the selection of Green Booth Award for the 123rd session and 466 custom-built booths applied for it. The environment of the Complex has been further improved: the amount of solid waste has been reduced by 46.6% and 27.8% in Phase 1 and 2 respectively. The cost of building green booths has also been significantly reduced, structural security of green booths improved and onsite display results enhanced.

Xu stated that in this session we’ve continued to provide insurance to innovation-driven development by professional and efficient IPR protection. The Canton Fair Complaint Station handled 421 IPR cases, with 533 exhibitors filed and 269 determined as constituting alleged infringement. Compared with the previous session, the number of cases handled decreased by 133, the number of filed enterprises decreased by 197, the number of alleged infringement down by 61. The Station also dealt with 49 trade disputes, 6 more than the last session. Canton Fair’s efficient IPR protection and complete working mechanism have not only enhanced the exhibitors’ awareness of valuing IPR and observing the laws and regulations on IPR protection, established a fair business environment, and improved Canton Fair’s credibility as a world famous brand. As China initiates a new round of opening up, Canton Fair’s IPR protection demonstrated to the world Chinese government’s position of IPR protection and innovation encouragement, and enhanced the confidence of the world to develop economic and trade relations with China.
Xu mentioned that we’ve implemented the strategic plan by the central government on poverty alleviation and the spirit of the State Council on supporting foreign trade development, and established Traditional Chinese Specialty section. A series of measures has been rolled out such as canceling booth fee for exhibitors in poor areas to support the foreign trade development of these areas. This session we welcomed 628 exhibitors from poor areas, concerning 13 product categories and 45 sections; in the Traditional Chinese Specialty section, 179 exhibitors from 21 trading delegations participated. The top 3 largest topics are food 63.5%, men and women’s wear 6.5% and medicines and health care products 6%. We’ve provided targeted training and guiding on exhibition participation and transaction to these exhibitors and boosted their confidence and export as well. Exhibitors said that Canton Fair provided a golden opportunity for them to learn the advanced management and operation concepts of their peers and broadened their horizon; and that they will bring these experiences and concepts back home to benefit more companies in the poor regions. Through Canton Fair they have displayed their corporate images, met many customers, known the latest market information and trend, and developed overseas markets, thus laying a solid foundation for winning the battle of poverty reduction and driving foreign trade and economic growth of poor areas.

Xu said that in this session we have strengthened our regulations on booth usage, investigated and notified 18 companies in violation of such regulations and maintained the onsite order. We’ve followed the instructions of the Ministry of Commerce, Guangdong Province, Guangzhou Municipality on security, adopted a multi-pronged approach of security ensured by people, technology and objects, and strengthened coordination. We’ve also carried out various security measures, bettered many kinds of emergency precaution plans, established a comprehensive security and precaution system, and strived to guarantee security with stricter requirements, higher standards and more solid measures. With converted efforts, this session was held smoothly and securely, with no incidents of terrorist attack, fire, food poisoning, major epidemic, or traffic congestion. We created a secure and comfortable environment for customers from home and abroad to negotiate and achieve orders.