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    Quality of buyers at the 124th Canton Fair steadily on the rise

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    At the concluding press conference for the 124th Canton Fair, Xu Bing, spokesperson and Deputy Secretary General of Canton Fair, Deputy Director General of China Foreign Trade Centre, introduced buyer attendance of this session.

    Xu said that against the complicated and severe background for foreign trade development, buyer attendance of this session totaled 189812, a slight decline over the autumn fair last year. The number of buyers from main developed economies and traditional markets showed a universal decrease, yet that of developing countries and emerging markets is on the rise. New buyer attendance keeps increasing and quality buyers from difference sectors around the globe attended. The structure of buyers has been improved and quality enhanced.

    Xu introduced that buyer attendance showed several characteristics.

    Total Buyer attendance registered a slight decrease but origin of buyers is more diversified. buyer attendance of the 124th session decreased by 1.11% over the autumn fair last year; that from Africa increased by 1.15%, from Americas decreased by 0.59%, from Asia decreased by 0.82%, from Europe decreased by 2.93%, and Oceania down by 2.95%. The main developed economies and traditional markets witnessed a universal decrease; EU, the US, Australia, Canada, Taiwan China and Hong Kong China decreased by3.93%、4.07%、4.14%、5.09%、 3.27%、6.34% respectively. Our buyers come from 215 countries and regions, a wider range.

    New buyers keep increasing. The number of new buyers increased by 2.34%, 3.45 percentage points higher than the overall level. Those from Belt & Road countries contributed to a 4.18% growth, 1.84 percentage points higher than the overall new buyer growth.

    Buyers from B&R countries and emerging markets increased. Buyers from B&R countries, ASEAN, SAARC, Africa, India, Ukraine, Russia all enjoyed growth.

    The number of quality of buyers is steadily on the rise. Quality buyers from difference sectors around the globe attended the fair. Altogether 110 out of the Top 250 Global Retailers attended the Fair. Among them there were 9 of the Top 10 retailers: Wal-Mart, Costco, Kroger, Schwartz, Carrefour, Home Depot, Wal-green, Amazon, and Aldi. 8 multinational companies from 6 countries participated in the Multinational Sourcing Service, including Harbor Freight (the US), Lifetime Brands (the US), Staples (the US), Kesko Group (Finland), Auchan Retail (France), Lock& Lock (South Korea), Kawan Lama Group (Indonesia), and Taurus Group (Spain).

    Xu introduced that there are several reasons leading to the above characteristics of buyers. Firstly, rising trade protectionism and unilateralism have had an impact on global trade. Secondly, growth of the main developed economies has slowed down. The Eurozone and Japan both suffered a shrinking economic growth rate. The IMF has lowered its economic forecast for 2018 and 2019 to 3.7% in its World Economic Outlook in the fall of 2018, 0.2 percentage points lower that its April forecasts. Thirdly, China-US trade frictions have brought about great uncertainties to the bilateral economic and trade relations of the two countries as well as to the world. Fourthly, According to the concept of “innovation, specialization, targeted and delicate”, we’ve intensified the invitation of global buyers to attend the fair and carried our marketing in a targeted manner based on key sectors and market destinations to make sure that new buyers, buyers from B&R countries and emerging markets rise.

    Despite the slight decline of buyer attendance, attendees from home and abroad still have a preference to Canton Fair and are confident about its future. Many think that it is still the first trade promotion platform in China. During the “Canton Fair Dialogue” held on Nov 3, representatives of exhibitors and buyers said “Canton Fair is a heaven to global buyers”; “Canton Fair is a port for products in the world, you can always find the suppliers and products that you need and source Chinese products of great quality and low cost.”; “Canton Fair culture has been deeply embedded in my blood, Canton Fair is my ‘home away from home’ and I don’t want to leave every time I come here”; “Canton Fair opened the first door to foreign trade”; “Canton Fair has made the self-owned brands of Chinese enterprises go global.”

    (Canton Fair Press Center)

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