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Last Updated:[27-09-2010 06:06:02 EDT] Zoom in Zoom out Back to Tradenews

China Uses Predominate Muslim A-region to Woo Arab Commerce



tradenews China has launched on Sunday a five-day trade platform for maximizing its trade with the Arab world from Ningxia Hui, an autonomous region with predominantly Muslim population. The China Investment and Trade Fair 2010 and the first China-Arab States Economic and Trade Forum held between 26 and 30 Sep will feature about 1000 local and foreign enterprises showcasing their products.

The Ningxia Commerce Department Director General, Ma Fu said that China would set up a 320,000 sq metre commodity centre costing some $300mn and industrial parks for halal food and related commodities. He further added that it would also set up China's halal food certification centre in Ningxia and exchange mutual halal certification with other Muslim nations.

The A-region comprises at least 10 percent of China’s 20mn Muslims. China intends to retrieve the volume of trade which it lost owing to the meltdown from Arab world during last financial year.

The total volume of Sino-Arab trade grew to $132.8bn in 2008 from $5.8bn in 1996, but fell slightly in 2009 due to the global economic downturn, to $107.4bn. However, bilateral trade between China and the Arab States hit a historical high of $69.1bn in the first-half of this year, up 52 percent over the same period last year.

The Chinese Vice Premier Hui Liangyu said co-operation between China and the Arab states had great potential and a broad future, as two-way trade continued to grow. A wide range of stalls with painting, handicraft, medicine, health care products, electronics, agriculture products, textile and light industries products apart from Muslim food and personal care products were present at the largest Sino-Arab trade fair.

As of the end of June, direct investment from China to the Arab states reached $3.78bn, and the investment scope had expanded from resource exploring, food and textile to those including leather manufacturing, automobile assembly and petrochemicals, Hui said.

Similarly, investment from the Arab states to China was $2.15bn, covering fields of petrochemicals, food, real estate and investment framework, he said. He added other sectors which attracted investments from the Arab nations, such as finance, tourism, aviation and new energy sectors were booming.

By Jose Roy




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