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Expo will show nation's global vision is a big draw for foreign brands

By SHI JING in Shanghai | China Daily | Updated: 2021-10-19 09:55
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Visitors select imported goods presented at a bazaar that opened in the run-up to the fourth China International Import Expo in Shanghai on Oct 5. [PHOTO BY YAN DAMING/FOR CHINA DAILY]

While the global market has undergone significant ups and downs due to the COVID-19 pandemic over the past two years, multinational companies are still eager to debut at the fourth edition of the China International Import Expo to better tap into the local market, which has been one of the first to recover from the disruption.

Multinational fragrance and cosmetics company Coty will make its first appearance at the CIIE this year. Covering 264 square meters, the Coty booth will showcase the company's latest products of all its 10 brands that are operating in China, including Gucci cosmetics, Bottega Veneta fragrance and skincare brand Lancaster. The company's sustainable development concept will be one of the major themes of Coty's exhibition this time.

Guilhem Souche, managing director of Coty China, said the CIIE has shown China's ever-expanding global vision, which has weathered the epidemic. This has not only provided much confidence to multinational companies aiming to further reach into the Chinese market, but also facilitated global economic and trade cooperation.

By attending the CIIE, Coty will have deeper insights into the new demands of Chinese consumers by providing more quality products and services, which will be sustainable at the same time, said Souche.

Personal care brand Nivea, the world's No 1 skincare brand, in terms of its 2020 retail value as calculated by consultancy Euromonitor International, is already well established in China. Nivea's parent company Beiersdorf is still new to most Chinese consumers.

Therefore, the Hamburg-based company will debut at the fourth CIIE by showcasing more brands such as Eucerin, Coppertone and Florena at its 500-sq-m booth. Technology breakthroughs such as its innovative ingredient Luminous 630, which can reduce dark spots, and UV camera will comprise another major highlight.

The CIIE has become a bridge between China and the outside world and provides platforms for international procurement, investment promotion, cultural exchanges, opening-up and cooperation, according to Shirley Xue, general manager of Beiersdorf Northeast Asia. Under China's dual-circulation development pattern, the CIIE will help foreign companies to expand the Chinese market and even the global market, she said.

Industry big name General Mills will take part in the CIIE for the first time this year. Apart from its well-known brands such as Haagen-Dazs and dinner kits brand Wanchai Ferry, General Mills will bring into the Chinese market for the first time its high-end pet food brand Blue Buffalo.

James Chiu, president and managing director of General Mills China, considered the CIIE a platform via which companies from all over the world can seek opportunities generated from China's ongoing opening-up.

With more than three decades of development in China, General Mills has experienced the increasingly friendly business environment. The introduction of new brands and products at the CIIE this year will cater to Chinese consumers' more sophisticated demand for better quality and nuanced life. It will also help General Mills to better communicate with business partners and accelerate its localization, he said.

Apart from the consumer goods sector, new faces will be found in the trade in services part at this year's exhibition, including the celebrated auction house Sotheby's. Shen Feilin, vice-chairperson of the New York-headquartered auction house known for its focus on fine and decorative art, jewelry and collectibles, said favorable tax policies are helping them to make the first presence at the CIIE.

The Ministry of Finance, the General Administration of Customs and the State Taxation Administration jointly announced before the CIIE last year that exhibitors for artworks, collectibles and antiques will be exempted from import tariff and value added tax and be provided with favorable consumption tax for up to five exhibits.

The purpose of the policy is to help more Chinese cultural relics return to the home country. Under such a policy, five ancient Chinese paintings returned to China via other auction houses during the third CIIE by enjoying nearly 300,000 yuan ($46,510) in tax cuts.

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