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Surprise Business Opportunity Opens in China, Despite Trade Brouhaha
Long Beach-Qingdao Association Invites SoCal Businesses
June 2019—Long Beach: “I almost couldn’t believe it when I saw the email,” said Mary E. Barton, Ph.D., “an invitation to bring a trade delegation to our Chinese sister city in October? But there it was—full of promises and a vision of doing business together.”
The business invitation was the first in her nearly 30 years of being involved with the Long Beach-Qingdao (“Ching-Dao”) Association. The City of Qingdao is inviting local businesses to an Import Export Expo October 17-20, with VIP treatment, free demonstration opportunities, business matchmaking, and more. So, the LBQA is organizing a local delegation to visit and show their wares to a new audience in Qingdao.
“I am happy they are optimistic about our bilateral trade,” she remarked, contemplating the trade war headlines that dominate China news. Given the importance of personal relationships in doing business in China, this opportunity has added importance. The Board of the LBQA decided to support the trip.
Barton often calls Qingdao “our BIG sister city,” since the nine-million-resident city outranks Long Beach on virtually every measure of size. From its port to its aquarium, from its coastline to its movie production capability, Qingdao is larger.
Still, having been to Qingdao many times, Barton knows that there is demand for American-made products and American services among sophisticated Chinese citizens. According to the U.S. Department of Commerce research, there is high demand for U.S. medical devices, educational programs, environmental technology products, green building devices, high-end branded consumer products, and smart city systems (for transport, water, health care, etc.), and more.
Qingdao is a very cosmopolitan city, so LBQA expects it to be a good launching pad for American products. The city is home to several popular Chinese-branded consumer products, including Tsingtao Beer and Haier Appliances, and its history as a center of higher education distinguishes it from most other cities. It still preserves the German heritage of a late 1800’s occupation. German architecture still marks the Qingdao “old town” near its scenic waterfront and the Tsingtao Brewery is a “must see” for tourists. Its proximity to South Korea means there is also wide acceptance of their products, too.
“Qingdao is an exceptionally promising market for American products, due to their modern manufacturing and savvy consumer population,” said Barton. Those interested in more details can find them at www.lbqa.org and ask questions at an “Information Session” in August hosted by the LBQA in downtown Long Beach.” To secure an invitation, email email@example.com.
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