Nepal products shine in China

  • China International Import Expo
- Anuj Kumar Adhikari, SHANGHAI

Nov 7, 2018-

The first ever import-themed international exhibition, the China International Import Expo (CIIE), kicked off in Shanghai, the largest economic centre of China, on Monday. The expo is China’s means of bolstering its opening-up policy that has brought unprecedented development in this communist-ruled nation.

As China is already the world’s second largest consumer market and is set to become the leading purchaser in the next five years, the expo is seen as China’s initiative to open its market to the world by welcoming foreign goods and services. 

Nepal, whose trade deficit with China has been on a fast growth year-on-year, participated in the expo by showcasing products such as carpets, metal crafts, pashmina, ceramics, coffee, and garment, among others.

Trade and Export Promotion Centre (TEPC) made arrangements for Nepali business enterprises to participate in the expo. Officials from Investment Board Nepal and Nepal Tourism Board were also present at the expo to boost Nepal’s investment potential and lure Chinese tour operators to route their tourism business into Nepal as the country celebrates Visit Nepal Year on 2020. The Minister for Industry Commerce and Supply Matrika Yadav also participated in the expo leading a delegation. The launching ceremony of the expo on Monday was attended by the state-heads of dozens of countries.  According to China’s President Xi Jinping, the expo strongly pitches for economic globalisation through trade liberalisation and to actively open the Chinese market to the world. “China’s initiative to expand imports is not a choice of expediency. It is a future-oriented step taken to embrace the world and promote common development,” said President Xi at the opening ceremony. 

“We will take further steps to lower tariffs, facilitate customs clearance, reduce institutional costs in import, and step up cross-border e-commerce and other new forms and models of business,” he added.

Nepal imported goods worth over Rs 53 billion from China while exports stood at Rs 560 million in the recent three months, according to statistics by the Department of Customs. China provides duty-free access to more than 8,000 Nepali goods but yet the trade deficit continues. Govinda Acharya, from TEPC, said that the expo is a big opportunity for Nepal’s small and medium scale enterprises to promote their products in the Chinese market. “If Nepal can cash in on more and more Chinese buyers for our products, we can see a way out of this trade deficit by increasing our export to China,” he said. According to Acharya, TEPC had received 23 applications from Nepali enterprises to join this import expo. “The expo organisers in China granted permission for three Nepali enterprises and provided two pavilions for free. So, we decided to bring on board an enterprise run by differently-abled women producing handicrafts,” he said. 

A number of visitors, Chinese investors and buyers flocked around the Nepali pavilion at the expo, attracted by the copperwares, Pashmina and Buddhist statues.  “The expo is a great opportunity for Nepal, as a number of buyers will be visiting this expo for business matchmaking,” said Ratnesh Shashi, from Investment Board Nepal, adding that the expo would boost Nepal’s export and reduce the trade gap. 

Published: 07-11-2018 09:03

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