China is a vast country with a population of 1.4 billion and the world’s fastest-growing middle class; more than 100 Chinese cities each have a population of more than 1 million. Demand for U.S. products is strong in the market, since these products enjoy a reputation for high performance and reliability. China is Wisconsin’s third-largest trading partner, with more than $1.4 billion in goods and services from Wisconsin companies exported to China in 2017. The growth of China’s middle class is unmatched, and companies in nearly all industries will find opportunities in China.
An upcoming global trade venture to China, organized by the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), will help connect you to potential buyers, distributors and other partners in the Chinese market. With logistics, interpretation and lodging arranged for you, you can focus your energies on meeting and vetting potential partners.
Demand for Wisconsin products
The top categories for Wisconsin products exported to China in 2017 were medical and scientific instruments (22 percent), industrial machinery (18 percent), electrical machinery (10 percent), non-rail vehicles and parts (5 percent) and wood products (5 percent). In particular, the Chinese market needs Wisconsin’s agricultural products and processed foods. In addition, machinery and technologies made in Wisconsin can supply the Chinese factories that manufacture products for the world.
Given the size and importance of the market, Wisconsin companies across many different sectors are encouraged to consider participating in this trade venture to explore opportunities in the market. However, due to China’s regional differences, unique regulatory environment and fast-changing marketing channels, it is not recommended as a first market for a company that is new to exporting; companies considering attending should have some prior exporting experience.
The global trade venture will take place April 5-17, 2019, and will include segments in Chengdu, Shanghai and Beijing. In each city, participating companies will be scheduled for customized business meetings with potential local partners hand-picked for their companies by Wisconsin’s authorized trade representatives in China.
Chengdu is the capital of Sichuan Province, and is the financial, economic and cultural heart of western China. Sichuan is internationally famous as the land of giant pandas and fiery foods. Traditionally very strong in agriculture and heavy industries, Chengdu’s economy has recently been growing in the area of light industry. It is a strong manufacturing base for high-tech products such as mobile devices, microchips, automobiles and new energy solutions.
With a greater metropolitan area population of 34 million, Shanghai is China’s business and financial hub. Located in eastern China at the mouth of the Yangtze River, it is home to the world’s busiest container port. This is the region of China with the highest per capita income, and success in this region can pave the way for success in other regional markets.
The program will conclude in the capital city of Beijing. With a population of 22 million, Beijing is the political, cultural and educational center of the country, as well as a technological research center and a major financial and insurance hub. Many Chinese companies are headquartered here, and this city is especially strategic for companies targeting large-scale projects.