Exporting to China

China is the great economic success story of the past 30 years. Previously an agricultural society, urbanisation reached over 52% in 2013. China is the world’s second largest economy after the United States and the biggest trading partner for most Asian economies. It’s a huge and expanding market for UK businesses.

Benefits for UK businesses include:

  • largest country in the world by population
  • fast growing consumer market
  • growing number of middle income consumers
  • close proximity to Asia Pacific region and economies
  • marked growth ensured by Chinese monetary policy
  • forecast to become the world’s largest luxury goods market by 2020
  • London being positioned as a developing centre for Chinese currency business

Strengths of the Chinese market include:

  • flourishing business base
  • strong government investment programme
  • largest Information and Communications Technology (ICT) market in the world
  • over 160 cities of 1 million+ inhabitants with new cities emerging
  • coastal areas developing into sophisticated urban clusters

There are various sources of additional information.

The Department for International Trade (DIT) helps UK-based companies succeed in the global economy and they also help overseas companies bring their investment to the UK. DIT offers expertise and contacts through its extensive network of specialists in the UK, and in British embassies and other diplomatic offices around the world. The Exporting to China pages are a useful source of information on the Gov.uk website. DiT also provide a free international export sales leads from its worldwide network. Search for export opportunities.

The China Britain Business Council (CBBC) help British and Chinese businesses and organisations work together in China, the UK and third markets around the world. CBBC operate alongside the British Chamber of Commerce in China to support companies of all sizes and sectors from multinationals to SMEs.  CBBC delivers a range of events and provide research and consultative services. Search the Live Exporting Opportunities finder on the CBBC website.

Hunan Friendship Agreement

In 2016, Lincolnshire County Council signed a friendship agreement with Hunan Province in China, taking advantage of existing business and civic links with the region. The County Council will be working with colleagues in Lincolnshire and Hunan over the coming months to identify where opportunities can be exploited. There are particular opportunities in agriculture, adult social care and education.

Agri Tech - products and services which not only offer greater yields but also show a reduced impact on water resources. This includes new crop varieties, pesticides, fertilisers, feeds, machinery, methods for husbandry and harvesting and also products and services which improve efficiency in harvesting, storage, processing, packaging and distribution. A specific area of opportunity is in ‘aviation’ technology for agriculture which combines drone and digital technology to inspect and monitor crop development and servicing requirements.

Elderly Care - new design and construction solutions for low-cost, sustainably built, and low-energy housing, be it for care homes, care communities or private residential property for the elderly.  ‘Smart’ technologies are required for both monitoring the elderly and giving them access to social services such as transport, healthcare, or cultural activities. There is an over-arching need for better healthcare services and medical equipment specifically for the elderly. Lincolnshire is moving to a management system where Healthcare and Social Care are brought together and this is an area where best practice in management and technology development can be shared between Hunan and Lincolnshire.

Education - supporting Agri-tech and Elderly Care development but also in other areas such as engineering there are possibilities to extend the links between Lincolnshire and Hunan via greater education collaboration. The University of Lincoln and Lincoln College are both well placed to create a platform for Lincolnshire companies to be involved through China-UK bilateral joint research or through the development of study programmes.

If you are interested in finding out more about the friendship agreement with Hunan and the opportunities it might bring, please contact the Business Lincolnshire Growth Hub via our email address - businesslincolnshire@lincolnshire.gov.uk or via our online form.