Staff from Bridgwater firm attend tourism expo event in China

Written by on November 21, 2020

STAFF from a Bridgwater firm attended an expo event in China to help promote potential partnerships between the two countries and their regions.

Aspen Waite China UK (AWCUK), which is based in Frian Street, was among the businesses to attend the 2020 Chongqing International Cultural and Tourism Industry Expo.

The firm provides an international business growth service for innovators in med-tech and life sciences, IT, low carbon and manufacturing.

Darren Horne, chief executive of AWCUK in Bridgwater, said: “Through our strategic partnership with the South West Business Council (SWBC), the economic body representing the South West of the UK, we were represented at the 2020 Chongqing International Cultural and Tourism Industry Expo.

“We support the export of UK innovation and provide those within the med-tech and life sciences, IT, low carbon and manufacturing sectors with an opportunity to work with Chinese counterparts.

“Through our links and expertise, we offer companies with innovative products the chance to expand into the Chinese market, or partner with Chinese colleagues, for the development and commercialisation of UK Innovation. We also support them throughout the process, so that the relationships achieve their potential.

“It was a great honour that our team was made special guests of the Chongqing Municipal Government. Chongqing has a huge cultural and historic significance in China as a renowned trade city of the ancient Silk Road, which is now being redeveloped in the 21st century as the capital of South West of China and the focus of the President Xi’s Belt and Road Initiative

“Chongqing is a highly influential megacity and is home to more than 31 million people. Administratively, it is one of the four municipalities under the direct administration of the central government of China and, therefore, organisations based there hold wonderful potential as partners for businesses in the South West of the UK. We can help them do this with our expertise and understanding of the business culture

“There was significant interest from the business community there in learning what our representatives and the SWBC has to offer.”

The Expo, which took place this month, featured thousands of exhibitors from 22 countries and 20 Chinese provinces with more than 100,000 attendees passing through the gates.

The AWCUK team were kept busy with enquiries at the Expo from a variety of sectors including tourism, leisure and pharmaceutical sectors.

Chairman of the South-West China Alliance (SWCA), the partner of the SWBC representing eight provinces, Hu Bin, said in his opening remarks: “The South West of China is very much open for business and welcomes all overseas interests to China’s fastest developing economic region.”

Dr Robin Daniels, CEO at SWBC added: “Our work with AWCUK and UK innovators exposes them to more than 140 incubation bases, science and technology parks throughout China. Our Chinese partners hold capability to incubate and expose UK innovation to global opportunities by way of manufacturing partnerships and investments.

“We’re able to help innovators who may previously have thought about the potential of the Chinese market but who have been unsure how to move things forward.

“The potential impacts to come from Brexit and COVID-19, China is a key trading partner for anyone in business in the UK.

“We offer innovators, manufacturers and investors from both China and the UK the chance to meet with a better understanding of each other’s cultures. We are bringing the two countries closer together than ever before, as natural trading partners, and as global citizens.”

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