#BEmissionCHN 2019: The Belgian delegation arrived in Shanghai, the economic and financial heart of China

After two days of political summits and economic contacts in Beijing, the Belgian economic mission has just arrived in Shanghai, the economic and financial heart of China. In addition to research and innovation, e-commerce, bio-tech and the luxury goods sector are also high on the agenda. All this will result in about thirty commercial agreements between Belgian and Chinese partners, which will hopefully give a positive boost to our bilateral trade relations in the future.

Many of the companies participating in the Belgian economic mission are already based in China. About 300 Belgian companies are active in Shanghai and the surrounding provinces of Jiangsu and Zhejiang. Solvay will seize the opportunity to officially announce the expansion of its research and innovation center in the presence of H.R.H. Princess Astrid. The company employs nearly 3,000 local employees and has 11 industrial sites in China.

In addition, the Belgian economic mission will visit the Chinese company Alibaba, which has opened its first European site in Liège. Alibaba's online sales platforms (e-commerce) offer opportunities for Belgian food companies, including SMEs, to offer their products in order to take advantage of the enormous opportunities in e-commerce.

The life sciences sector will also be in the spotlight. Many Belgian companies are real technological leaders in this sector. The Walloon Export Agency (AWEX) and Flanders Investment and Trade (FIT) are organising several seminars and numerous business-to-business (B2B) meetings between Belgian companies and potential Chinese partners. These B2B's are the focal point of the Belgian economic mission. Their aim is to stimulate exports and thus rebalance the Belgian trade deficit with China.

The Chinese market for luxury goods continues to grow, which offers many opportunities for our companies. Hub.Brussels is therefore organising a lifestyle event that will highlight the Belgian assets in the luxury sector.

During an official signing ceremony, some thirty trade agreements between Belgian and Chinese partners will be signed.

Finally, culture will be discussed in Shanghai. The WIELS Museum in Brussels is presenting a unique exhibition to promote contemporary Belgian art. The exhibition Convex / Concave: Belgian Contemporary Art will be on display until January 2020 in the new TANK Museum in Shanghai. Internationally renowned Belgian artists (Michael Borremans, Luc Tuymans, Francis Alÿs, etc.) will present their work together with some emerging artists. The official Belgian delegation will visit the exhibition, which is supported by various Belgian institutions.