Bilateral trade between the UAE and China has surged nearly 14% in the first half of this year, with GCC countries accounting for up to 70% of China’s trade with Arab countries.
This was announced at a press conference held at Expo Centre Sharjah to announce the details of the 12th Chinese Commodities Fair Sharjah (CCFS), the largest Chinese fair in the Middle East.
In value terms, from January to June, trade between the countries reached $21.435bn, a 13.68% growth from the same period last year, with China’s exports to the UAE standing at $15.444bn and exports from the UAE to China touching $5.991bn. In 2012, the bilateral trade between China and the UAE stood at $40.42bn, according to the Chinese Customs statistics.
The press conference was addressed by Mr. Saif Mohammed Al Midfa, CEO, Expo Centre Sharjah; and Mr Patrick Zheng Shuo, General Manager, China Machinery & Electronics Products Exhibition Center (Chinamex).
“The Chinese Commodities Fair Sharjah has been playing the role of a catalyst in boosting the bilateral trade between the UAE and China. The UAE is now China’s largest export market and the second largest trade partner among Arab countries. The 12th edition of the show will continue to cement the trade and economic activities between the countries and offer immense opportunities for traders and investors from both sides,” said Mr. Midfa.
China’s trade with several Western countries was affected by the economic slowdown, but its economic ties with the GCC have continued to grow significantly even in the aftermath of the global financial crisis, with CCFS being a conduit for enhancing bilateral trade. Global consultancies have predicted that bilateral trade between China and the Middle East will reach between $350bn and $500bn by 2020, with the Gulf states, most of them being major oil suppliers, accounting for the lion’s share of the trade.
“For its 12th edition, the show will focus on Chinese green food and visitors can expect fresh fruits, vegetables & grains, dry fruits, beverages and frozen food. Apart from the green food, there will be exhibitors displaying fast food and puffed food processing equipment,” said Mr. Patrick Zheng Shuo.
About 150 leading producers and dealers from various Chinese provinces have already booked their space for the show.
Among key suppliers, Yasheng Yamit Co, the champion of water saving technology in China, will showcase its high-tech irrigation system, which will be a boon for the climate conditions of the region. Shandong Lu Yan Seed Co, which will introduce its unique products, is also on the lookout for partners in the Middle East to market its seeds.
“CCFS 2013 will also feature Chinese traditional folk arts, Chinese kite making, etc. to be presented by the Traditional Folk Art Institution from Mountain Tai of Shandong Province apart from the display and sale of paintings by famous Chinese artists,” added Mr Patrick Zheng Shuo.
Beidahuang Agriculture, which controls over half of the agricultural products’ market in north China, will have an impressive presence at the show. Polyphenol-rich beverages of Lusheng Health-Source & Technology, produced using indigenous technology and well-known for their effects of lowering blood pressure, will also find their pride of place at the show.
For the first time, exhibitors from South Korea will also take part in CCFS 2013, displaying health and nutritional products.
For its 11th edition in 2012, CCFS attracted 14,352 general visitors and 4,287 buyers from 32 countries, with the total turnover reaching $110m.
12th CCFS will take place from 16 to 18 December 2013 at Expo Centre Sharjah with the timings as 10am to 6pm daily. Admission is free for trade and professional visitors.