Chongqing's key sectors get international boost
Updated: May 20, 2024 09:12 China Daily

Chongqing, which is intensifying efforts to improve recognition of its products in overseas markets, highlighted on Saturday the first group of six brand sectors in which it holds a competitive advantage.

During the Chongqing Brands Global Promotion Launching Ceremony, it was announced that the municipality in Southwest China plans to promote its roles as an international communication center in central and western China, a destination for investment and overseas study, and a hub of the auto industry. In addition, it plans to put its delicacies and natural scenery in the global spotlight.

Also during Saturday's event, the 2024 Land-Sea Economic Forum attracted more than 200 guests from over 20 countries including Singapore, the United States, Argentina and Germany.

During the forum, experts shared insights into helping Chongqing's enterprises and "Chongqing-made" products go global.

The event was co-hosted by the Western China International Communication Organization, CITIC Press Group and China Watch, a think tank powered by China Daily.

In recent years, Chinese brands have received increasing recognition from overseas consumers. According to Kantar BrandZ's 2023 "Chinese Global Brand Builders" report, the reputation of Chinese companies "going global" has been bolstered by improvements to product research and development.

Chongqing, with a population of 32 million, became the country's fourth municipality in 1997 after Beijing, Shanghai and Tianjin. It covers 82,402 square kilometers, making it the largest of the four.

Located on the upper reaches of the Yangtze River, the city boasts key geographic advantages as a strategic pivot point in the national development programs for China's western regions and the Chengdu-Chongqing Economic Circle. It also is a connecting point for the Belt and Road Initiative and the Yangtze River Economic Belt.

Addressing the launching ceremony on Saturday, Chongqing Mayor Hu Henghua said, "Chongqing boasts an outstanding geographic location, a rich history and culture, a solid industrial base, strong innovation and a comfortable living environment."

Hu said the guests are welcome to invest in Chongqing, to experience the vibrant modern city, and to help the city go global.

As a key hub of China's auto industry, Chongqing saw rapid growth in its production of new energy vehicles in 2023. More than 500,000 NEVs rolled off the production lines in the city last year, up 30.3 percent year-on-year, according to local authorities.

Chongqing carmaker Changan has achieved fast growth in overseas markets. In the first quarter of this year, Changan sold 108,900 cars abroad, a year-on-year increase of about 80 percent.

Xi Guohua, chairman of CITIC Group, a State-owned financial conglomerate, said at the event that the group will continue to support Chongqing's opening-up.

"CITIC has always regarded Chongqing as an important region for investment and business development," he said. "We will serve as a bridge connecting domestic and international markets and facilitate more Chongqing enterprises to expand overseas."

Over the weekend, foreign diplomats from nine countries, including Argentina, Germany and Singapore, learned more about the development of the nation's western region and explored business opportunities during a visit to the city.

"Argentina and China have had a very tight relationship in the past half-century, and we are looking forward to furthering that relationship and expanding trade and investment," said Marcelo Suarez Salvia, Argentina's ambassador to China.

Cooperation between Argentine provinces and Chongqing in areas such as education and healthcare has been deepening, he added.

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