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The 17th China International Fair for Investment and Trade closed successfully

     cheqiu     2013-9-13 11:50:00    

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The 17th China International Fair for Investment & Trade (CIFIT) concluded in Xiamen, Fujian on September 11 after four days of exhibitions, seminars, and business talks.

The 17th CIFIT received strong backing from the Party and government leaders. Ma Kai, a member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and Vice Premier of China, launched the fair with the “Golden Key” and addressed the International Investment Forum 2013. Also in attendance at the Fair were Wang Qinmin, Vice Chairman of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference and Chairman of the All-China Federation of Industry and Commerce, and Wang Zhongyu, former Vice Chairman of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference.
The Fair witnessed lively talks on investment and trade and yield substantial results. According to incomplete statistics, at the Fair, a total of 1,386 investment agreements were signed, involving a total investment of 420.6 billion yuan, including inward investment of 198 billion yuan, outward investment of 21.5 billion yuan, and domestic collaborative investment of 153.3 billion yuan. It’s noteworthy that Hainan, the Guest Province of Honor at the Fair, hosted a series of events, with 26 investment agreements clinched, involving contractual investment of more than 50 billion yuan.
Thanks to the vigorous support of related national government agencies, the active involvement of all segments of society and Chinese and foreign enterprises, and the concerted efforts of all member institutions, the 17th CIFIT had a larger-than-ever scale, a sharper international focus, more authoritative forums, a broader range of events, more economical organizing, and more remarkable results. It had the following seven features:
I.     Participation of Trade Professionals from All over the World, Joining of Authoritative Organizations, and Accentuated Role as a Platform for International Economic Cooperation and Exchange
The 17th CIFIT took place at a time when the world economy was undergoing a weak recovery and demand in the international market demand was sliding. Amidst the complex and volatile international economic environment, the CIFIT created a superb platform for promoting comprehensive economic recovery, becoming the focus of the world’s attention and attracting a significant number of participants. According to the Organizing Committee’s statistics, as of noon of Sept 11, the Fair had received a total of 15,173 overseas trade visitors from 118 countries and regions, as well as 556 overseas delegations representing 100 countries and regions, including 10 international organizations, 435 foreign trade missions, and 111 Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan trade missions. Developed and emerging economies proved enthusiastic participants – there were more than 250 delegations from developed countries in North American and Europe, and 70 delegations from “BRICS” emerging economies. Compared with previous years, the number of high-ranking officials and prominent personages in attendance increased. The Fair hosted 560 VIPs from abroad, including Marco Hausik, Deputy Prime Minister of Namibia; Mukhisa Kituyi, UNCTAD Secretary-General; Rob Davies, Minister of Trade and Industry of South Africa; Rintaro Tamaki, OECD Deputy Secretary-General; Richard Sezibera, Secretary-General of East African Community; Chiang Hsiao-yen, Vice Chairman of Kuomintang; Karin Finkelston and Hua Jingdong, Vice Presidents of the International Finance Corporation of the World Bank; Abu Nar, President of the World Trade Center Association; Jim Rogers, co-founder of the Quantum Fund; Lord Sassoon, Chairman of the Britain-China Business Council; Forrest Monroy, Global Vice President of Seagate Technology.
CIFIT also hosted a large number of participants from Chinese government agencies, business circles and academia. In attendance were 40,123 trade visitors from central ministries, national agencies, provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities, as well as from more than 1,400 large-scale central enterprises, renowned private enterprises, and listed companies in China.
In recognition of CIFIT’s rising international profile, more and more authoritative international organizations and institutions have joined in CIFIT. Earlier this year, the World Trade Organization (WTO) officially became a co-sponsor of CIFIT, fully involved in the organizing of the Fair. Thus, CIFIT has become the world’s only global investment event jointly sponsored by all of the top six authoritative international economic organizations – the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the World Trade Organization (WTO), the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the International Finance Corporation (IFC) of the World Bank, and the World Association of Investment Promotion Agencies (WAIPA).
In addition, the China Enterprise Confederation, also known as the China Enterprise Directors Association, and the All-China Federation of Returned Overseas Chinese have also become members of CIFIT. Moreover, the CIFIT Organizing Committee has forged strategic partnerships with China’s most authoritative media organization – Xinhua News Agency and China’s largest financial portal – Hexun Net. The active joining of the authoritative domestic and international organizations and leading media organizations has further enhanced CIFIT’s status and role as a global investment promotion platform and as a bridge connecting China with the rest of the world for win-win interaction.
II.    Focused on Global Value Chain Reshaping and Innovative Growth, Releasing Authoritative Information, and Creating a Top-class Platform for Global Investment Cooperation
The 17th CIFIT included 63 high-level forums and seminars, including the International Investment Forum 2013 and thematic forums on “attracting FDI” and “going global”. As many as 186 prominent personages from more than 40 countries and regions addressed the forums, attracting a combined total audience of over 19,230 people. The forums and seminars had the following features:
First, the International Investment Forum 2013 was comprehensively upgraded. For the first time, the forum was jointly hosted by the Ministry of Commerce, CCTV and UNCTAD, becoming an more internationalize event. The Organizing Committee introduced an innovative model of “keynote forum, dedicated forums, information dissemination, and interactive communication” for the forum. Themed on global value chain reshaping the and innovative growth, the forum explored four hot topics, including modern service trade and global investment , international investment attractiveness, innovation-driven growth and new industrial revolution, and opportunities and challenges of globalization for Chinese enterprises. And an investment salon was also held. A number of eminent personages addressed the forum, including Marco Hausik, Deputy Prime Minister of Namibia; Rob Davies, Minister of Trade and Industry of South Africa; Mukhisa Kituyi, UNCTAD Secretary-General; Rintaro Tamaki, OECD Deputy Secretary-General; Lin Yifu, Honorary President of the National School of Development at Peking University; Karin Finkelston and Hua Jingdong, Vice Presidents of the International Finance Corporation of the World Bank; Magdalena Arza, Vice President of the European Investment Bank; Forrest Monroy, Global Vice President of Seagate Technology; Abdel-Hamid Mamdouh, Director of Trade in Services at WTO; Pierre Sauve, professor of he World Trade Institute in Berne, Switzerland; Wang Jianzhou , former Chairman of China Mobile and author of “The Era of Big Data”; He Keng, Deputy Director of the NPC Financial and Economic Committee; Ho Lok Fu, Microsoft’s global vice president and Greater China chairman. The speakers shared their sharp insights in global capital flows, turning the forum into the most influential top forum in the global investment field.
Second, the functionality of authoritative information release has been strengthened. As the barometer of international investment, CIFIT’s policy information release functions have been further accentuated. At the Fair, UNCTAD released the “World Investment Report 2013” (Chinese version) and “Trade and Development Report 2013”, elaborating on the world economic situation and prospects of development and presenting a number of recommendations aimed at promoting global economic recovery and development. China’s Ministry of Commerce released the “China FDI (CIFIT Index)”, the “2012 Annual Statistical Bulletin on China’s Direct Outward Investment”, the “Summary of China’s Direct Outward in 2012”, the “Guide to Environmental Protection in  Foreign Investment Cooperation”, the “Country-specific Guide to Foreign Investment”, and the “Methods for the Verification and Annual Assessment of Overseas Economic and Trade Cooperation Zones”, providing reference information and policy support for Chinese enterprises seeking to go global. Xinhua News Agency released the “Report on the Globalization of Chinese Enterprises” and the “Strategies for Chinese Enterprises to Cope with Globalization Risks”.
Third, thematic forums with rich contents were held. At the Fair, the Ministry of Commerce hosted nearly 20 forums and seminars, including the Multinational Companies Conference and the Cross-Straits Economic and Trade Cooperation and Development Forum, with topics covering investment agreement negotiations, outsourcing, finance lease, emerging markets, cloud computing, etc.  The Multinational Companies Conference attracted representatives from 60 multinational companies. Focused on multilateral and bilateral exchanges and cooperation in the international arena, the CIFIT Organizing Committee hosted the ASEAN SME Cooperation Forum, the China - East African Community Cooperation Forum, the China-US Enterprise Investment Cooperation Forum - Energy and Green Innovation, and the sixth China-Germany Economic Cooperation Matchmaking Symposium.  UNCTAD, UNIDO, IFC, the World Trade Center Association and other international organizations also hosted various thematic forums. In addition, the CIFIT Organizing Committee hosted more than 10 forums in collaboration with more than 20 government agencies or organizations, such as State Council Overseas Chinese Affairs Office, the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade, and the Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries. The forums included 11th Cross-Straits, Hong Kong and Macao Economic and Trade Cooperation Forum, the 7th Overseas Chinese investment Summit, the 12th Roundtable of Leaders of World Chambers of Commerce, the 10th China International Friendship City Mayors Forum, the 4th Fujian Merchants Forum, and the 11th Capital Forum - Dialogue  with Jims Rogers, receiving lavish praises from participants.
Fourth, a broad range of domestic and overseas promotion events was staged. Twenty-one countries and regions, including the US, Japan, the UK, India, the UAE, Zambia , Austria, South Korea, Namibia and Jordan, made investment presentations at the Fair. And thirteen Chinese cities and provinces, including Beijing, Kashgar of Xinjiang, Shenzhen and Ganzhou, also held various presentations and briefings.
III. Increased Internationality and Specialization of Exhibition, Enhanced Practical Results of Exhibitions and Negotiations, and Ever-improving Investment Promotion Functions
The 17th CIFIT featured about 4,000 international-standard booths in 12 exhibition areas on a show floor of ??100,000 square meters, with as many as 1,470 exhibitors. The exhibition had the following main features:
First, the exhibition was optimized and had increased specialization. The 17th CIFIT focused on hot industries for investment and vigorously promoted industry investment and regional investment. In addition to the Travel Fair and the Property Fair, a number of exhibition areas were staged for the first time, including the “Guest Country of Honor” South Africa Pavilion, the China-Africa Cooperation Exhibition Area, the ASEAN Pavilion, the Finance Pavilion, the Exhibition Area for the Achievements and Innovative Technology Products by Overseas-educated Chinese Personnel, and the Brand-name Enterprise Exhibition Area.
Second, the number of overseas exhibitors reached a record high and the internationality was further enhanced. CIFIT attracted exhibitors from 53 countries and regions, including the U.S., Japan, Germany, Italy, Spain, Russia, South Africa, India and Brazil. Four new records were set. First, the overseas pavilion had a record floor area of 12,500 square meters, more than double the last year’s. Second, the floor area of booths staged by individual countries and regions reached a new record, with South Africa, the guest country of honor, alone staging an exhibition of ??1,260 square meters. Third, the U.S. Pavilion had a record exhibition area of ??600 square meters. And fourth, the Chinese Foreign Investment and Cooperation Zones Exhibition Area had a record floor area of more than 2,000 square meters, including a 1,200-square-meter China-Africa Cooperation Zone Exhibition Area. In addition, UNIDO, the World Trade Center Association and other international organizations also hosted exhibitions.
Third, a broader range of Pavilion Day events was staged, generating much interest. Fascinating Pavilion Day events were held, adding to the festivity of the Fair as an economic and trade exchanges extravaganza. South Africa, the only guest country of honor country at the Fair, had a 120-member delegation at the Fair. Representing 19 South African companies and headed by Davies, Minister of Trade and Industry of South Africa, the delegation hosted a wide array of promotion and matchmaking events to demonstrate the investment opportunities, culture and customs of the “nation of rainbows”. The U.S. Embassy in China joined hands with the top three American chambers of commerce in China and the US-China Chamber of Commerce to stage 51 booths with a combined gross floor area of  600 square meters. Nearly 60 American companies took part in the exhibitions and conferences and hosted U.S. Pavilion Day events. Hainan, the guest province of honor, set up an exhibition of nearly 1,200 square meters, and hosted a wide variety of investment promotion and matchmaking events, reaping fruitful results.  China CNR Corporation, the star enterprise of the Fair, set up a stand of 1,000 square meters to showcase two state-of-the-art trams – the “Auspicious Dragon” and the “Lucky Dragon”, generating tremendous interest.
Fourth, more attention was paid to the combination of exhibitions and negotiations, and more practical results were attained. The CIFIT Organizing Committee arranged for exhibitors to put aside part of their booths as a venue for talks with trade visitors. To ensure the combination of exhibitions and negotiations, the Organizing Committee set up a 5,000-square-meter project matchmaking service area in Hall T in Building 3 at the Xiamen Conference and Exhibition Center, highlighting information about investment projects and intensifying the negotiation atmosphere. It also set up 30 VIP rooms for one-on-one business talks, achieving significant results.
IV.   Aligned with the Needs of Industries, Producing Remarkable Results for Investors and Project Owners, and Creating a Never-ending Matchmaking Platform for Capital and Projects
The 17th CIFIT continued to introduce innovative measures to promote the two main themes of “attracting FDI” and “going global”. A total of 36,000 carefully selected investment projects were unveiled at the Fair. Over the course of four days, more than 20 project matchmaking events were hosted. The events fell into three categories – “comprehensive”, “specific” and “premium”. They created greater space and opportunities for the participating countries and regions to engage in broader cooperation. Exhibitors and trade visitors actively participated in these events, achieving extraordinary results. These events had the following three main features:
First, comprehensive matchmaking services were provided for “attracting FDI” and “going global”. At the “attracting FDI” matchmaking symposium, more than 600 domestic and foreign institutional investors set up separate negotiation desks and rooms, and nearly 8,000 project owners and government officials took part in the matchmaking events, with 20 investment institutions reaching preliminary cooperation agreements with project owners. Ruiijing and Kanghao Technology signed a deal of 1 billion yuan and 10 million yuan, respectively. Beijing Zhongpeng located potential investors for projects valued at a whopping $200 million. At the matchmaking symposium for Chinese enterprises “going out”, 85 organizations from nearly 60 countries set up negotiation desks, attracting nearly 400 Chinese enterprise seeking to “go global”. Five institutional investors, including Jordan’s Investment Board, signed five deals on alternative energy and greenfield investment, worth more than $60 million, with the single biggest deal valued at $15 million.
Second, dedicated matchmaking services for industrial investment were intensified. The 17th CIFIT comprehensively strengthened investment promotion by sector, hosting more than 10 thematic matchmaking events on trade in services, infrastructure, emerging industries, Taiwan-funded enterprises, listed companies, investment funds, proprietary technology, modern agriculture, and cultural and creative industries. The matchmaking events took place in various forms, such as roadshows for premium projects, investment institutions’ dialogue with governors and mayors, and investment plan presentations. At the Fair, US investment firms MAS Capital and Eagle Capital jointly organized eight roadshows for projects in the environmental protection, clean energy, new manufacturing and consumer industries, attracting nearly 100 companies and more than 200 investment institutions from all over China. The investment institutions’ dialogue with governors and mayors generated tremendous interest, with 45 matchmaking sessions held, becoming a signature event of the Fair.
Third, a brand-new version of the “Online CIFIT” was launched. The CIFIT Organizing Committee launched a brand-new version the “Online CIFIT” (www.icifit.com) on August 15, providing year-round online investment and financing matchmaking, demonstration and negotiation services. During a fair, an experiencing zone for the Online CIFIT was opened, offering value-added services to domestic and foreign businesses. In less than a month, the Online CIFIT has received nearly 7,000 registered corporate users, and investors and project owners have released more than 50,000 investment messages. During the Fair, the Online CIFIT received 250,000 views a day.
V.    Joining Hands with Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao to Build a Central Stage for Exchanges and Cooperation and for Common Prosperity
The 17th CIFIT sustained its commitment to Taiwan by hosting more innovative events themed on Taiwan, receiving an enthusiastic response from Taiwan people. The number of Taiwan trade visitors to the Fair reached 4,216, making Taiwan the largest source of overseas visitors. As many as 85 delegations participated in the Fair, including Taiwan’s top six chambers of commerce. Prominent Taiwan personages taking part in the Fair included Chiang Hsiao-yen, vice chairman of Kuomintang; Chen Wu-Shoung, honorary chairman of the Taiwan Federation of Industries and founder of Ho Tung Chemicals; Lei Tsu-Kang, chairman of Taiwan’s Industrial and Commercial Development Council and president of Upworth Holdings; Lin Yi-Shou, chairman of the Taiwan Business Enterprise Confederation, Taiwan's “Iron King” and founder of the United Group; Chu Ping-Yu, executive director of the Taiwan Association of Industry and Commerce and chairman of Taiwan Life Insurance; and Liao Shang-Wen, chairman of Eastern Media International Corp.
On the exhibition front, the Taiwan Federation of Industries staged an exhibition at the Fair for the first time, offering services to mainland enterprises seeking to invest in Taiwan. The Taipei Business Council and the Eastern Media International Corp teamed up with the CIFIT Organizing Committee for the first time to host an elaborate exhibition themed on Taiwan; they also sought to tap into mainland China’s e-commerce market via CIFIT; moreover, they helped organize the 9th Straits Travel Fair which showcased tourism resources and tourism products and strengthened exchanges across the Taiwan Straits.
On the project matchmaking front, the CIFIT Organizing Committee collaborated with the Taipei Importers and Exporters Association to host the Cross-Straits Investment and Trade Matchmaking Symposium. At the symposium, more than 20 Taiwan enterprises and mainland organizations and enterprises had “one-on-one, face-to-face” talks. To further enhance the results, the CIFIT Organizing Committee arranged small seminars, booth-based matchmaking, visits and other forms of matchmaking events for Taiwan businessmen.
On the forum and seminar front, the Ministry of Commerce and the State Council Taiwan Affairs Office jointly hosted the 8th Cross-Strait Economic Cooperation and Development Forum, the signature event at the Fair relating to Taiwan. The forum brought together more than 100 prominent businessmen from Taiwan, who discussed hot topics such as the cross-strait services trade agreement. The All-China Federation of Industry and Commerce joined hands with leading Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau industrial and commercial organizations to organize the 2013 Greater China Region Economic and Trade Cooperation Matchmaking Symposium, attracting more than 30 well-known Taiwanese entrepreneurs, who engaged in matchmaking talks on projects in the modern service industry and the green low-carbon industry to explore industry development opportunities.
In addition, the Fair also saw a big presence of Hong Kong and Macao businesses. Hong Kong and Macau hosted an exhibition of 140 and 200 square meters, respectively, and staged various Pavilion Day events.
V.    Focus of Global Media Attention, Increased Brand Recognition, and Expanding International Influence
The 17th CIFIT continued to capture Chinese and foreign media attention. A total of 320 domestic and foreign media organizations sent nearly 1,500 correspondents to cover the 17th CIFIT, including the U.S. International Market News, Bloomberg, Seoul News Agency, South Africa’s “Africa Times”, Kazakh News Agency, Egypt’s Middle East News Agency, Vietnam’s “People’s Daily”, Indonesia’s International Daily Newspaper Group, Times of India, the Philippines’ “World News”, Taiwan CTV, CTS, Commons Daily, Business Daily, Want Daily, Hong Kong Mirror Newspaper, Phoenix Satellite TV, Asia Cultural Wealth Post, Xinhua News Agency, People’s Daily, Guangming Daily, China Central Television, China Daily, Economic Daily, the Central People’s Broadcasting Station, China radio International, China New Agency, Economic Observer, China Business News, 21st Century Business Herald, China Economic Weekly, Beijing Review, as well as the Xinhua Net, People Net, Sina, Tencent, Sohu, CCTV Net, Phoenix Net, and Hexun Net. Compared with previous years, the media outlets covering the events are of a higher level and with greater influence, and most of them were mainstream organizations. Preliminary data show that the journalists wrote more than 15,000 news reports on the Fair, generating enormous interest in a very short period of time and turning the Fair into the center of global attention. The coverage significantly enhanced CIFIT’s recognition.
VII. Intensified Service and Logistical Support, Optimized Event Process, and Minimized Expenses
This year, the CIFIT strictly followed the “Eight Rules” enacted by the CPC Central Committee and introduced more innovative measures to organize the events. While stressing innovation, the staging of major events was simplified, the regular gala show was cancelled, the process of major events was optimized, and more attention was paid to the creation of a platform that facilitated the networking among trade visitors, thereby ensuring the limited funds were spent in a way that increased the Fair’s practical results and expanded its influence.
First, the opening ceremony was reduced to six minutes but turned out to be well-received elegant event. No flower plots were placed on the venue of the opening ceremony, and the VIP zone was not red-carpeted, the columns in the lobby were not wrapped in satin, the escalators were not draped with mantles, no military band was hired, and the procedures and organizing of the opening ceremony was meticulously optimized. “The opening ceremony of this year’s CIFIT is the shortest, most concise and most effective one! I’ve participated in the opening ceremony of the several editions of the Fair, but this year’s has given me the deepest impression!” exclaimed UNCTAD Secretary-General Mukhisa Kituyi.
Second, no banquets, cocktail party and other large-scale reception events were held; instead, work luncheons and dinners were hosted and networking events were staged, providing participants with an efficient platform for sharing information, forging business ties, exploring business opportunities, and negotiating investment projects. Event staging was kept as simple as possible and subject to strict budgetary control.
Third, the public staging of the Fair was simplified, and the decoration in the square in front of the Conference and Exhibition Center and flower beds before the Conference Center were cancelled, but event information dissemination and public information services were increased; some booth staging materials were collected for recycling purposes to reduce costs.
Fourth, the number of seminars and closed-door internal conferences hosted by government agencies with public financial revenues and lacking in attractiveness was reduced.
To ensure the success of the Fair, the host province of Fujian and the host city of Xiamen placed strong emphasis on the comprehensive logistical support for the Fair. Organizers made elaborate arrangements for security, transportation, accommodation, hygiene, and cityscape to ensure total satisfaction of participants. The Organizing Committee also achieved a higher standard in exhibition and conference service, reception, show floor management, information access, and news reporting.
The 18th CIFIT will take place in Xiamen from September 8 through September 11, 2014. We hope that you will continue to lend your valuable support to the Fair and take an active part in the Fair, and we look forward to welcoming you to the Fair in Xiamen on September 8 next year.

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