The China International Import Expo (CIIE) saw the UK delegation, led by Dr Liam Fox, secure commercial deals across a range of sectors.
The UK delegation secured more than £2 billion of commercial deals across a range of sectors including creative industries, healthcare, education, energy, mining and aviation. The deals include:
China’s ongoing efforts to open up, increase imports across both goods and services and improve the business environment were welcomed by the UK government, as were President Xi’s calls to relax investment restrictions in the education and healthcare sectors.
International Trade Secretary Dr Liam Fox MP said: “Shanghai Expo was a major success for UK firms with more than £2 billion of deals signed by businesses of all sizes – from SME’s in the creative industries to global powerhouses like Rolls Royce. China demonstrated a real desire for British goods and collaboration with British firms and the UK delegation took full advantage.
“There were also very encouraging signs that China is genuinely committed to further opening up of its economy. And while we welcome the signals, we want to see a clear timeline for liberalisation and even further opening up including easing investment restrictions across all sectors, amending technology import-export regulations and ensuring government procurement follows WTO standards.
“Further liberalisation in the services sector, in particular, is key for British firms as we have the world class expertise that many Chinese businesses need in order to reach their economic potential.”
Baroness Fairhead, Minister for Trade and Export Promotion, said: “The UK Pavilion at the CIIE in Shanghai exhibited the very best of British innovation in areas like education, AI and big data where we are truly global leaders. UK businesses used this unique platform, and benefited from our country’s position as a ‘Country of Honour’, to secure substantial new sales.
“There is real and significant demand in China for British products and services. Indeed, recent research from Barclays shows that Chinese consumers are willing to pay more for goods made in the UK because of their trusted quality.
“Our department’s new Export Strategy aims to ensure British businesses are properly supported to capitalise on this opportunity. Our goal is to help UK companies build even further on last year’s impressive 28% growth of exports to China.”