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Yu Miaojie:US firms express optimism in China's import expo


By Yu Xi and Huang Lanlan in Shanghai Source:Global Times 
US companies said they have high expectations for the forthcoming China International Import Expo (CIIE) and are confident in the Chinese market.

"We welcome the positive trend in Sino-US economic relations and expect more cooperation between the two countries," Sherman Ge, president of Metal Shark Asia Pacific Region, told the Global Times at the expo's main venue on Friday.

This is the first time for the US boat builder to enter the Chinese mainland market. "The expo gives us a precious opportunity to bring our good products, techniques and design ideas to potential Chinese clients, as well as to make business cooperation with China in boat selling and construction," Ge said. The company accounts for 40 percent of the public service boats market in the US, he explained.

"I did once have slight concerns about Sino-US trade relations, but now I believe that disputes won't always exist, and we should take a long view on the market instead of this year's market only," Ge said, adding that it's necessary for US companies to let Chinese markets and consumers know about their good items and skills.

Ge said they have talked to a local government fishery department in Ningbo, East China's Zhejiang Province, who has showed interest in buying their products. But he didn't disclose the amount.

Nearly 180 US companies will attend the first CIIE held in Shanghai from November 5 to 10, Gao Feng, a spokesperson of the Ministry of Commerce said at a press conference on October 25. 

The US companies are from various industries, including high-tech, intelligent equipment, medical equipment, food and consumer goods.

The Global Times has talked to the top management of several US companies that will participate in the CIIE. They said they regard the expo as a good platform for them to strengthen further business cooperation with China.

"US firms participating in the CIIE implies they are reluctant to see trade frictions between the US and China," Yu Miaojie, deputy dean of National School of Development at Peking University, told the Global Times on Friday.

The high tariffs that the US imposed on China's products also hurt many American upstream companies such as vehicle engine makers, which used to sell products to China's auto firms, Yu said, adding that these US companies hope that through this expo, they could minimize the negative impact of the trade friction.

Downstream US companies such as those of daily use consumer goods regard CIIE as a sound opportunity to increase exports to China, Yu noted.

"By attending the upcoming expo in China, they are sending a signal that they welcome business cooperation but not trade friction between the two countries," Yu explained.

In the first three quarters of this year, China's trade volume with the US increased 6.5 percent year-on-year to 3.06 trillion yuan ($ 445.1 billion), accounting for 13.8 percent of its total foreign trade, according to data released by China's General Administration of Customs in October.