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Singapore Companies Continue to Pursue Opportunities in China at 18th CAEXPO

  • 44 companies and 5 TACs to participate in hybrid CAEXPO.
  • The Singapore Pavilion emphasises the need for greater cooperation and connectivity between China and ASEAN, to collectively rejuvenate our economies for an endemic future.
  • The Singapore Day Seminar aims to increase awareness of the expertise of Singapore businesses and promote collaboration between businesses in China and ASEAN.
Thursday, 9 September 2021 [Singapore] – While the COVID-19 pandemic and ongoing travel restrictions continue to pose challenges for Singapore companies looking to expand overseas, the Singapore Business Federation (SBF) will be leading 44 companies and five trade associations and chambers (TACs) to take part in the 18th China-ASEAN Expo (CAEXPO) which will be held in a hybrid format, both virtually and physically in Nanning, Guangxi, China from 10-13 September 2021.

The theme of the 18th CAEXPO is “Sharing Opportunities Created by the New Land-Sea Corridor, Building the China-ASEAN Community with a Shared Future” (共享陆海新通道新机遇,共建中国-东盟命运共同体). About 55% of participating Singapore companies also took part in CAEXPO last year. SBF, with the support of the Ministry of Trade and Industry, has been spearheading the participation of Singapore companies at this trade show since 2006. 

Singapore’s presence at 18th CAEXPO

The Singapore Pavilion has adopted the theme “Emerging Stronger for a Shared Future” (同新协力 共创未来) to showcase Singapore’s role as a connectivity hub and highlight the need for greater cooperation between China and ASEAN to rejuvenate our collective economies in preparation for an endemic future.  

Occupying a total of 180 sqm, the Pavilion will feature our three flagship Government-to-Government projects – the China-Singapore Suzhou Industrial Park (SIP), the Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-city (SSTEC), and the China-Singapore (Chongqing) Connectivity Initiative (CCI). In addition to the 3 G-to-G projects, 27 Singapore companies from the logistics, real estate and financial services sectors will also showcase their products and services under the Singapore National Pavilion.

The Singapore Commodity Trade Pavilion will showcase leading Singapore companies from the F&B, retail and services industries that have an established presence in China or are keen to venture into the Chinese market. CAEXPO offers these companies a platform to strengthen their presence and connect with new partners in China and ASEAN.

On 10 September 2021, Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat will be delivering the opening remarks virtually at the Opening Ceremony of the 18th CAEXPO and 18th China-ASEAN Business Investment Summit (CABIS). Mr Lim Ming Yan, Chairman, SBF will also deliver a speech at the Opening Ceremony of CABIS’ flagship event, the China-ASEAN Business Leaders Forum, which will be attended by esteemed speakers such as Mr Jurin Laksanavisit, Thailand's Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Commerce and Mrs Gao Yan, Chairperson of the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade and the Organising Committee of CABIS.

On 11 September 2021, SBF will also organise the Singapore Day Seminar as part of CAEXPO to deepen the economic, trade and investment cooperation between Singapore and China, and help businesses from China and ASEAN countries better understand Singapore’s business prospects and environment. This year’s seminar will be held virtually to cater to exhibitors and trade visitors who are unable to be physically present in Nanning. The seminar’s speakers include representatives from Singapore Economic Development Board, Chongqing Connectivity Initiative Office, Singapore International Arbitration Centre, Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-city and China-Singapore Guangzhou Knowledge City.

Singapore business interests in China

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, China remains an important market for Singapore businesses. According to SBF’s National Business Survey 2020/2021, China is ranked among the top three countries that businesses have identified in their expansion plans. China and Singapore are also major trading partners. China has been Singapore’s largest trading partner for eight consecutive years since 2013. In 2020, Singapore’s imports and exports accounted for 14% of China’s total trade.

China and Singapore are strong partners in areas ranging from trade, investment, technology and cultural exchanges. The strong partnership was boosted by the ASEAN-China Free Trade Agreement (ACFTA) in 2004 and the China-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (CSFTA) in 2009. Singapore businesses benefit from reduced import tariffs and enhanced investment protection with these FTAs.

Among the companies participating in CAEXPO this year is F.W.H Trading, a local company selling educational toys for children that was founded in 2013. This will be the eighth consecutive year that the company is participating in CAEXPO. Ms Evangeline Tan, Deputy Department Director, F.W.H Trading said, “We have been a strong supporter of CAEXPO and have participated under the Singapore Commodity Trade Pavilion for many years. Due to the closure of our physical retail outlets in Singapore, there have been limited opportunities for us to showcase our products. This exhibition platform gives us an opportunity to attract distributors in China so that we can continue to sell to the schools and enrichment centres in China.”

Taking part in its first-ever CAEXPO is Swift Health Food (S) Pte Ltd. Founded in Singapore in 1997, it is a wholesaler of health supplements such as honey, bee products and superfood products.  Ms Pearline Goh, Director, Swift Health Food (S) Pte Ltd said, “COVID-19 has greatly impacted our retail business. The customer footfall, especially those from tourists has dropped drastically. To tap on the huge demand for natural health food in China, we have decided to take part in CAEXPO this year. CAEXPO is our first overseas exhibition, and we are excited to see how receptive the Chinese consumers are to our health products.”

Mr Lam Yi Young, Chief Executive Officer, SBF said, “CAEXPO is an important platform for Singapore companies to showcase their expertise and demonstrate the pivotal role they can play in enhancing digital, financial and infrastructure connectivity, and trade and economic ties between China and ASEAN. Singapore companies continue to recognise the importance of internationalisation and China is a large and important market with many opportunities for our companies. SBF will continue to partner with and support Singapore companies in their internationalisation journey to seize new opportunities for growth.”

CAEXPO is an international economic and trade event co-hosted by the economic and trade authorities of China and the 10 ASEAN countries. Inaugurated in 2004, it aims to advance and promote China-ASEAN economic relations and has served as an effective platform to strengthen the business partnerships and people-to-people exchanges between China and ASEAN.

Annex A: SBF Chairman Lim Ming Yan’s speech at Opening Ceremony of the China-ASEAN Business Leaders Forum & Special Meeting on the 30th Anniversary of China-ASEAN Dialogue Relations
Annex B: List of participating Singapore companies for 18th CAEXPO 2021

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