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Updated : 2015-11-13
( Xinhua ) forms JV with Otto Group to sell foreign brands to China

A villager shops online to order a washing machine.[Provided to]

BEIJING - Chinese online retailer has formed a joint venture with Germany's Otto Group to sell more overseas brands in China.

The joint venture, called Zitra and based in Germany, will help international brands intent on selling to Chinese consumers via the internet through marketing, IT, logistics and post-sales services, according to

Chinese online retailers, from large marketplaces such as and Alibaba's Tmall to smaller players, have expanded their offerings of global brands to cater to Chinese consumers' growing appetite for globally renowned and quality products. opened JD Worldwide earlier this year, an online platform selling only imported products from baby formula milk and fresh seafood to luxury clothing and cosmetics, to compete against Alibaba's similar marketplace.

Both have signed up merchants and brands from countries ranging from the United States and Britain to Japan and the Republic of Korea to make foreign products more accessible to Chinese consumers.

China's cross-border retail sales grew tenfold in the past four years to more than $20 billion last year, according to eMarketer. China's Ministry of Commerce reckons that goods flowing in and out of China via online sales will account for one fifth of the country's total foreign trade next year, compared with less than 15 percent last year.