Enhance Trade Promotion and Create Cooperation Platform
–– Interview with Zhao Xueming, director of the CCPIT Tianjin Branch
China’s Foreign Trade: PECC (Pacific Economic Cooperation Council) is an important exhibition platform of Tianjin. In your opinion, what will be the scale of the 12th PECC? What will be the major work of Tianjin Trade Promotion Council for organizing the conference?
Zhao Xueming: Since the year 1999, PECC exhibition has received great support from National Ministry of Commerce, the CCPIT and other ministries of the State Council. Because it is the only international exhibition held under the authorization of PECC in China, the past exhibitions have seen active participations by PECC members. The scale of the event has become increasingly large.
From 2011, PECC started working with Tianjin Fair, the city’s traditional business exhibition, to create a larger platform for the communications between Chinese companies and their overseas counterparts. Also from that year, in order to promote local companies to expand their business in the overseas market, Tianjin Branch organized five events of “Chinese Companies ‘Going Overseas’ Strategic Discussion and Policy Promotion”, involving 54 countries and regions. There are 28 countries in the “Belt and Road” region, 8 ASEAN countries, and 4 BRICS countries, and the number of participants reached about 5,500. About 7 cooperation agreements were signed on the venue of exhibition or after later negotiations were 7, and about 60 trade and investment projects have been launched after negotiation and will enter the next phase of development.
The 11th PECC exhibition features a floor space of 80,000 sq. m. and the participation of companies from more than 20 countries in Southeast Asia, the Europe and U.S. and the Oceania. The event also attracted 70 business delegations from Chinese mainland, involving nearly 9,000 companies and 55,000 businessmen. The trade volume of the exhibition surpassed 1 billion yuan and the number of audience reached more than 200,000. PECC exhibition has become one of the most important trade and investment cooperation platforms in North China and even Northeast Asia, and one of the most influential international exhibition events of China.
With the theme of “innovation drives development, trade changes life”, the 12th PECC exhibition will be held during Apr. 14-19. As one of organizers of the event, Tianjin Branch is responsible for holding PECC Strategy Dialogue on Chinese Companies Going Overseas, Investment Policy Promotion Meeting for Middle and East Europe, Latin American Business Seminar, Rebuilding China-arab Silk Road Seminar and 2016 Tianjin Import Product Exhibition. All the preparation work is under way. During the exhibition, the council will
Tianjin is embracing golden development opportunities as the national government is implementing five strategies, including “the Belt and Road” strategy, “coordinated development of Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei”, “the construction of free trade zone”, “self-innovation demonstration area construction” and “the development of Binhai new area”. “It is important to grasp the opportunity of the combination of five strategies, promote the functional transformation and structural adjustment under the theme of deepening reform and promoting trade through attraction of business, enhance the promotion of trade and investment, improve the degree of opening-up and functions to provide better services for the government and businesses.” said Zhao Xueming, director of the CCPIT Tianjin Branch, at the National Trade Promotion Work Conference.
alsothe investmentconsulting companies, businessesinvite leaders firms promotionexpertsof from and trade and the multi-nationaland institutions,scholars government,finance, to Tianjin. facilitation Representativesinstitutions will from also worldbe present trade at the exhibition to share their knowledge of the investment environment, recent polices and key investment projects of their respective countries. I also believe that this exhibition will outperform the last one in the degree of participating countries and the scale of exhibition. I am also confident that this exhibition will create more cooperation opportunities for businesses both in China and the whole world
he council will play to its trade promotion functions as always, to provide solid services for business both in China and around the world.
China’s Foreign Trade: Are there any cases since the commerce dispute mediation platform of the free trade zone launched? How do you evaluate the role played by the platform?
Zhao Xueming: On Nov. 5, 2015, Tianjin Trade Promotion Council and the People’s Court of Binhai New Region launched the opening ceremony for “Commerce Disputer Mediation Platform of the Free Trade Zone”, and singed the memorandum on the Cooperation in the Establishment and Improvement of Commerce Dispute Mediation Docking Mechanism. Both parties started working together to establish the dispute mediation mechanism in the free trade zone. The Court of Binhai New Region will set up a tribunal in the free trade zone, to hear cases related to commerce disputes. The dispute mediation center of the Tianjin Trade Promotion Council also set up a mediation chair in the court, to offer mediation services before and after the appeal.
Because the platform has just been running, so far there are no cases solved through the platform. However, the mediation center of our council has long been established and each year there have been successful cases. In 2015, we received 46 cases and mediated 34 cases, with the involved case amount of about 90 million yuan.
The mediation court set up by Tianjin Trade Promotion Council in the free trade zone is committed to the exploration of mediation solutions to commerce dispute cases faced by companies in the free trade zone. The court will play to the strength of our council in professionalism, international operation and strong network, to offer mediation services to solving commerce disputers at the designation, entrustment and invitation of People’s Court. The mediation court will abide by the principle of legitimacy, voluntariness, fairness and classification. Our services will be professional, efficient and economic. The establishment of the mediation court will be conducive to solving commerce disputes in the free trade zone and creating a better legal environment for the international operation of Tianjin free trade zone.
We will fully implement the arrangement of the cooperation memorandum to strictly manage and regulate the work of the commerce dispute mediation court. We will also expand channels for the legal services, pay close attention to the development of Tianjin foreign trade to meet immediate needs of foreign trade companies in the area of foreign commerce disputes. In general the court will provide better services for the economy of Tianjin and the free trade zone.
I would like to emphasize that providing legal services is a very important function of Tianjin Trade Promotion Council. The commerce law center will be the major service provider and its history of providing foreign legal services is the longest in Tianjin. The center has a group of professional commerce law experts and for the past years, has successfully solved hundreds of disputes for local foreign trade companies, through various means of mediation, arbitration, appeal and overseas rights protection. It also provides label registration services for all the famous foreign trade brands of Tianjin, to protect the rights of these companies. The center provides legal risk prevention and intellectual property legal knowledge training for hundreds of trade companies and legal consulting services for a large number of people with legal profession.
China’s Foreign Trade: Tianjin Commodity Traders Association International Coalition is a great innovation. In your opinion, what are the major strengths of the coalition? What type of services it could provide for the companies?
Zhao Xueming: The idea of establishing the international coalition was raised by the CCPIT Tianjin Branch and the purpose is to create a more efficient cooperation mechanism within the association. The coalition was set up on the basis of mutual recognition and trust. Members of the coalition will increase cooperation in a complementary manner to share service information and regulate the behaviors of each other through the implementation of mechanism and rules. So the services will be better provided for every member of the association. The international coalition will play to its strength as a public service platform, to offer opportunities of information sharing and communications among the members. Valuable resources, information and business opportunities will be more efficiently located and mobilized to achieve better business results and create more benefits for the members of the association.
In the signing ceremony of the Tianjin Commodity Traders Association International Coalition held at the end of last year, more than 30 business associations, including Tianjin International Chamber of Commerce, Zhejiang Chamber of Commerce in Tianjin, Fujian Chamber of Commerce in Tianjin and Wenzhon Chamber of Commerce in Tianjin, signed the Intention Letter of the Creation of Tianjin Commodit y Traders Association International Coalition. As the major organizing member of the coalition, Tianjin Trade Promotion Council will play a more important role in creating communication channels between the government and businesses, between domestic and foreign companies. The council will help open up more service channels, to make member institutions enter the service framework created by the council and the chamber of commerce, so that these members will enjoy more professional, regulated and efficient services offered by the council. T