CIIE offers 'golden opportunities' for businesses entering Chinese market: Thai banker

2021-11-01 15:38:09Xinhua Editor : Zhang Dongfang ECNS App Download

The upcoming China International Import Expo (CIIE) will offer "golden opportunities" for businesses that want to tap into the Chinese market, said Wichai Kinchong Choi, senior vice president of leading Thai bank Kasikornbank.

The CIIE, the world's first dedicated import exhibition, focuses on bringing more overseas goods and services into the Chinese market. With a sluggish world economy amid the COVID-19 pandemic, "China is playing a very important role in helping the world economy recover," Wichai said in an interview.

There are many ways to recover the economy, but promoting trade is the quickest and most effective way, he said, adding that the timing of the CIIE is great, "as we need such a big event to push the global economic recovery."

He noted that the CIIE gives Thai companies and exporters a good opportunity to better understand the Chinese market, which is crucial as among Thailand's traditional major export destinations, the European Union (EU) market remains weak while the U.S. market is not stable, and "we rely quite a lot on the Chinese market."

Businesses, by attending the CIIE, can also directly communicate with their end users instead of via intermediaries, enabling them to better control their products and prices to maintain a competitive edge, he said.

For the last two years, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, there were a lot of Thai companies trying to join the event, which helped promote Thailand's exports to China, he said.

The Kasikornbank also registered to join the fourth CIIE, which is slated to be held offline in Shanghai from Nov. 5 to 10 this year.

Recalling the bank's missing of the first CIIE in 2018, Wichai said "we tried to join the first CIIE, but we had been late (for registration) and were told that the expo had been fully-booked and there was no space even to set up a small booth."

"In the second year, we got smart and prepared even more than half a year before the event," he said.

Established in Thailand in 1945, the Kasikornbank entered the Chinese market in 2017 and has now set up branches in Shenzhen, Chengdu and Shanghai. "We tapped into the Chinese market a bit late, but our competitiveness is that we are a Thai Bank and ASEAN bank, and we can connect the Chinese market with the ASEAN market," he said.

"After we got a local bank license in China, we have been able to do business in China like any other Chinese bank. Of course, there is competition, but the playing field is level," he said.

Considering China as the most significant promoter of the free market in the world, he said "we are very grateful to see China play a key role in promoting free market and open economy as well as fighting trade protectionism. It's very important."


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