Visitors Chen Fei (L) and Weng Jingyi pose for photos in front of the venue of the first China International Import Expo (CIIE) in Shanghai, east China, Nov. 9, 2018. (Xinhua/Li Xin)
China International Import Expo (CIIE) has provided a rare platform for cooperation between China and the United States, said a U.S. scholar.
"On the economic front, it opens the door to American exporters to sell goods and services in the vast Chinese market. The country has developed a strong appetite for quality products," said Khairy Tourk, a professor of economics with the Stuart School of Business at the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago.
"China has tremendous purchasing power," he said. China's foreign food imports amounted to over 60 billion dollars in 2017, more than its exports in the same category. "U.S. exporters have a comparative advantage in green foodstuffs."
There is also a promising new market as Chinese private small- and medium-sized companies are interested in advanced technology in order to upgrade industrial structure, Tourk said.
Tourk said that despite the current trade frictions, "the business communities in both China and the United States are interested in having fruitful relationship with each other."
The economic professor praised China's import expo as "an innovative approach that no country has ever tried before to increase imports."
To deal with global trade imbalances, "China is behaving as a responsible global stakeholder" by implementing measures to open the economy wider to the rest of the world.
"China has embarked on a series of economic reforms in order to make the economy more consumption-oriented," Tourk said. "The country's potential to increase imports is substantial."
At a time when the world is uncertain about the health of the global economy and the West is suffering from anemic economic growth, "Chinese efforts to increase imports will have salient effects on increasing global aggregate demand," he said.
Moreover, "with protectionist sentiments on the rise, Chinese facilitation of cross-border trade is one more indication that China stands up as a defender of globalization and open markets," Tourk added.
A total of 172 countries, regions and international organizations and more than 3,600 enterprises participated in the first CIIE held in last November in Shanghai. The second CIIE is slated to take place in early November this year in Shanghai.