Midlands Engine creative businesses head to China

Date posted: September 17, 2018
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Fourteen Midlands businesses with growth potential are all packed and ready to travel to Hangzhou, China as part of a five-day trade visit to the city to forge trade links and further strengthen the Midlands relationship with the region to attend the Hangzhou Cultural and Creative Industry Expo in Zhejiang province, China.

The delegation includes universities and businesses across the Midlands region, with supporting representation from Nottingham’s Creative Quarter and Nottingham City Council.

As well as attending the cultural fair, the Midlands businesses will have the opportunity to exhibit their products and services at the expo that attracts 400,000 business visitors and ranks as one of China’s top five industry events.

The trade mission (19-23 September) is fully funded by the Zhejiang government, and will be the first of many commercially focused creative and cultural exchanges between the Midlands and Zhejiang in the coming months.

Visits like these establish important communication and business foundations for local businesses to help them make connections more easily and explore innovative ways to partner with Chinese businesses and create trading links with China as part of ongoing creative and cultural collaborations between the Midlands and Zhejiang Province.

With a population larger than London, the historic city of Hangzhou is the capital of Zhejiang Province and is a key cultural hub in China and is home to some of China’s most influential businesses including retail giant Alibaba, China’s biggest online retailer, wholesaler and payment platform. The Hangzhou Cultural and Creative Industry Expo has been running for more than ten years and attracts significant international attention.

Midlands Engine has established a strong partnership with Zhejiang Province, one of China’s largest and most wealthy regions. Nottingham City also has strong links in China. This relationship stems from the University of Nottingham’s campus in Ningbo and the Nottingham-Ningbo sister city relationship (Ningbo is Zhejiang’s second largest city after Hangzhou).

Sir John Peace, Chairman of the Midlands Engine, said

The Midlands Engine is delighted to work alongside Nottingham City Council to attend and support the Hangzhou Cultural and Creative Industry expo.

The Midlands Engine attendance at this important event is part of a wider strategy that the Midlands is developing with China. Our main purpose is to establish foundations for future world-class creative and cultural collaborations between the Midlands and Zhejiang.

I have visited Hangzhou many times and will be visiting the Governor of Zhejiang in November where I hope to agree a five-year-plan. This strategy will shine a spotlight on business, culture, creativity and education and explore new innovative ways for our regions to partner and develop world class products and services of the future.

The trade mission will take place from 19th – 23rd September.

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