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To Promote Exchanges and Enhance Understanding, the CIIE Integrates Economic and Trade Relations with Social and Cultural Exchanges

November 12, 2019

The 2nd China International Import Expo (CIIE) will be held in Shanghai from November 5th to 10th, 2019. As the first CIIE in 2018, the CIIE 2019 is still composed of Country Exhibition, Business Exhibition and the Hongqiao International Economic Forum. In addition to the larger physical exhibition area, wider exhibition scope and better exhibition quality, the 2nd CIIE will strengthen the innovation exhibition, taking initiatives such as adding the “CIIE Release” [SEELE1] platform, encouraging local investment promotion, and opening country pavilions to the public after the Expo ends, so as to greatly enhance CIIE’s important functions of communicating domestic and foreign information and building social consensus.

During the first CIIE, the Hongqiao International Economic Forum played an important role as the main front for the exchanges of domestic and foreign government agencies and corporates. The CIIE 2019 maintains the Hongqiao International Economic Forum, inviting politicians of relevant countries and heads of international organizations to deliver speeches on “Opening-up and Innovation for Win-win Cooperation.” As for the supporting activities, the CIIE 2019 will host hundreds of high-level professional supporting activities to promote international exchanges besides the Hongqiao International Economic Forum. In addition to the World Trade Organization, the United Nations Development Programme, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the CIIE 2019 also developed international organizations such as the United Nations Industrial Development Organization and the International Trade Center as partners, which further enhances the international and openness of the Expo.

Based on the platform of the Hongqiao International Economic Forum, the newly added “CIIE Release” platform will become another important communication channel. On the press conference held by the State Council Information Office of China to announce the”100-day Countdown” to the second CIIE, Wang Bingnan, Vice Minister of China’s Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM), Director of the Preparatory Committee Office of CIIE, and Director of China International Import introduced the original intention of this innovative initiative, which is to support various ministries, industry organizations, and international organizations to release the latest opening-up policies, research results, annual reports, etc., creating an authoritative platform for the release of policy and information. Enterprises will also promote their global product debut and first exhibition in China through this platform. The establishment of this new communication channel will further enhance the authority of CIIE, promote the transparency of China’s opening up policy, and fully convey the message of China’s adherence to opening up as an integral member of the global community.

As the first CIIE in 2018 established the brand, the second Expo is more focused on its spillover effect. The CIIE 2019 encourages and supports local and national delegations to invite investment promote projects. At the “Shanghai Investment Promotion Exchange Conference Targeting CIIE 2019” held on September 12, 2019, the “Map of Investment in Shanghai”[SEELE2]  was released. This professional map shows 50 characteristic economic and trade investment routes, and gives a visual presentation of the spatial distribution of investment information and industrial resources, which covers over a hundred classic display platforms including Lin-gang New Area of China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone, Shanghai Lujiazui Finance & Trade Zone, the exotic building clusters in the Bund of Shanghai, Shanghai Zhangjiang National Innovation Demonstration Zone, and the West Bund “Intelligence Valley” in Xuhui District, highlighting Shanghai’s achievements in building itself into “five centers” of international economic, financial, trade, shipping and technological innovation. Such an initiative will help governments and enterprises in all countries to fully understand the economic development achievements and industrial investment dynamics of Shanghai. CIIE not only promotes trade, but also exerts its intangible influence on promoting economic and trade exchanges and cultural communication. Through various forms of activities and means, it will give a vivid and natural presentation of the full image of China to the guests, and promote other countries’ in-depth understanding of various local provinces and cities in China so that they will better understand China’s modernization process.

Another innovation this year is that after the 6-day CIIE ends, country pavilions will be open to the public free of charge from November 13th to 20th, showcasing the development and achievements of over 60 countries (including China Pavilion) and international organizations in the field of trade and investment, including trade in goods, trade in services, industrial conditions, investment tourism, humanity culture and science technology, as well as industries with distinctive advantages. The public has paid high attention to the CIIE since the first Expo last year. This year, they will have the opportunity to take a closer look at the trade and investment fields of the world, and learn more about the latest developments in world trade and the current development of the “Belt and Road” Initiative. The consensus of Chinese society to move forward and further expand opening up will be of great significance. This will be of great significance for building the consensus of promoting China’s social development and further opening up to the outside world.

The 6-day CIIE 2019 will once again emphasize China’s role as a responsible great power with an open mind to integrate into the global community. In addition to the trade, the CIIE 2019 will also undertake the task of vividly presenting the image of China. Economic activities are of social importance, and trade between countries can’t do without full social and cultural exchanges. The CIIE will strengthen communication and exchanges between countries, promote a growing consensus among all Chinese people, integrates economic and trade relations with social and cultural exchanges to continue enhance China’s contacts with the world in the following 365 days.

 (Written by Tong Xi: Associate Research Fellow at the Institute of Journalism and Communication Studies, Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences)