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More negotiations and deals for visitors and exhibitors at 128th Canton Fair

Whether online or offline, the China Import and Export Fair, also known as the Canton Fair, has remained true to its original mission to serve foreign trade.

The 128th CIEF, set to end on Saturday, has impressed participating companies from various sectors with its mature intelligent cloud platform, which combines multiple services including business matchmaking and online business talks while facilitating trade promotion.

Making full use of the platform, businesses participating in the event have reaped a harvest of orders, cooperation intentions and purchase enquiries.

As the COVID-19 outbreak is well under control in China and a series of policies have been rolled out to support foreign trade, the decline in exports of Chinese agricultural products has narrowed quarter-on-quarter.

In the third quarter of this year, the export of agricultural products from China reported a slight 0.7 percent reduction.

Thus agro-businesses are restoring confidence and have played a more active role in the 128th Canton Fair.

Data from the China Chamber of Commerce of Import and Export of Foodstuffs, Native Produce and Animal By-products show that more than 1,600 exhibitors from the sectors of food, blankets, gardening devices, and fur, leather and feather products have made a presence at the 128th fair.

They have prepared livestreaming plans, released the latest fashion trends and developed more new cost-effective products to meet market changes.

Most of them have netted more gains than at the 127th fair, in terms of enquiries, intent orders and deals.

According to some of the agricultural businesses, visits on the opening day of the 128th Canton Fair on Oct 15 alone outnumbered the 10- day total of the 127th session.

Due to the pandemic, exhibitors are keener to develop new products to cope with market changes.

For instance, a food corporation from Zhejiang province brought its new product lineup made using innovative production methods and package designs to the fair.

They include sweet mijiu, or rice wine, made from fermented glutinous rice in which the sugars are transformed into alcohol by yeast; fresh huangjiu, or yellow wine, a type of iconic yellow millet liquor made from glutinous rice; and sparkling wine.

Qingwang Group, a condiment company from Anhui province, has developed various salt series and other seasoning products. It has secured orders at the 128th Canton Fair.

For exporters of home furniture and appliances, their traditional markets are in Europe and the United States.

Affected by the pandemic, devices and equipment that can help complete office work at home are gaining popularity among buyers.

Some of the suppliers of such products said their deliveries have been scheduled further out, to next April.

Toymakers said that compared with those in the 127th session, they have received more enquires at the ongoing fair, mostly from Southeast Asia, South Africa and developing countries. However, the number of European buyers interested in China-made toys is also on the rise, they added.

Facing market uncertainties from the pandemic, the businesses from the light industry greatly value their online sales platforms and participation in the cloud Canton Fair.

Many of them have founded a team dedicated to their exhibition and promotion at the fair. Via picture displays, livstreaming and video broadcasts, the exhibitors have increased interactions with online visitors in a bid to secure every opportunity to win orders and expand overseas markets.

One of the exhibitors said their company aired more than 500 livestreams during the 128th fair.

The domestic market has turned out to be appealing to foreign trade businesses. Amid a sluggish international market, many export-oriented companies have turned their eyes to domestic consumption.

While trying to maintain their overseas market shares, the traders are adapting their originally export-intended products to the needs of domestic buyers.

Aware of such a demand from exhibitors, the fair organizers distinguished the foreign trade businesses intended for domestic sales by adding a tag on their online shops, saying their products will be available in China.

The organizers have also published an online guide to the products to be sold in the domestic market, hoping to increase efficiency in business matchmaking.

The move has helped many of the exhibitors receive enquiries and gain a foothold in the domestic market.

The China Chamber of Commerce for Import and Export of Machinery and Electronic Products said its members made full use of services offered at the Canton Fair website, which helped them increase their efficiency in reaching deals.

One of the businesses used virtual reality technology to present its exhibition hall and production facilities and livestreamed its automated production lines.

Another company livestreamed in four versions, each set for different time and targeting potential buyers from America, Europe, the Asia-Pacific region and the Middle East, respectively.

To date, providers of machinery and electronic products have received letters of intent from various countries, including Canada, the US, Brazil and Russia.

Gotech, a manufacturer of small electric appliances based in Guangzhou, Guangdong province, secured orders worth some $500,000.

Lutian, an agricultural machinery manufacturer, received more than 20 enquiries within three days during the fair, many of which expressed intentions to reach a deal.

Fujian Yanan Power Group received nearly 60 visitors as of Tuesday, and more than 10 letters of intent were under negotiation.

The fruitful fair has won wide acclamation from participating businesses for its upgraded services, including smoother online operations, real-time transfer of enquiry information to designated business representatives` smartphones and online business cards that enable exhibitors to obtain buyers` information more directly.

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