PH Consulate General in Shanghai Champions Increased PH Trade Links with “Capital of Small Commodities” Yiwu City

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Economic Officer Consul Conrado B. Demdem, Jr. (right) and PTIC-Shanghai Chief Mario Tani (left) flank Yiwu Vice Mayor WANG. (Shanghai PCG photo)

YIWU CITY, 09 August – SME cooperation with Yiwu City in Zhejiang Province – dubbed the “global capital of small commodities” – topped the Philippine Consulate General in Shanghai’s agenda as it took part in the 2021 Global Youth Business Program Organized by the ASEAN-China Center (ACC) with the Department of Foreign Affairs of Zhejiang Province and the Yiwu Municipal People’s Government.

Economic Officer Consul Conrado B. Demdem, Jr. and Commercial Vice Consul Mario Tani joined Beijing- and Shanghai-based diplomats and China-based youth representatives from ASEAN countries at the two-day event.

Three young entrepreneurs made up the Philippine youth delegates: senior financial analyst Mr. Joey Alcala, 35; trader Ms. Denise Ramento, 31, and marketing executive Ms. Tamara Hodreal, 28.

During the dialogue, Consul Demdem enjoined the Yiwu government to promote SME-to-SME linkages with the Philippines and develop a one-stop center to facilitate customs and other procedures and clearances. Philippine Trade and Investment Center-Shanghai Chief Tani confirmed the Philippines’ interest in engaging more Yiwu enterprises. Welcoming the direct Yiwu-Manila cargo flight route inaugurated earlier this year, he conveyed the Philippines’ readiness to further boost trade using this channel.

Yiwu Vice Mayor WANG Wei manifested similar interest on the city’s part, while underscoring the need for the Philippines to fully utilize available China-bound cargo space aboard these flights.

Yiwu officials touted the city as the world’s largest market for consumer goods, with over two million products, visited yearly by more than 500,000 foreign buyers and travelers. Bilateral trade between Yiwu and ASEAN countries have grown substantially over the past years, peaking in 2020 at USD 45 billion, making ASEAN the city’s largest trading partner. The trend is expected to continue, with the anticipated entry into force of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement and with ASEAN-China Dialogue Relations hitting new highs as it entered its thirtieth year. 

Consul Demdem and VC Tani also joined other diplomats in touring Yiwu’s key facilities. They visited the Import Commodities Trade Plaza, a massive bonded warehouse for imported goods from more than 100 countries and regions, and the Yiwu-Xinjiang-Europe Railway Station, which has operated close to 3,000 round-trip freight trains since 2014, shipping over 240,000 TEUs of cargo over a route extending all the way to Madrid.

The Global Youth Business Program was launched by the Yiwu Municipal People’s Government in 2018. It offers young people aged 18 to 35 of other nationalities based in China short courses on trade, e-commerce, and business internships, as well as cultural tours. END

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Consul Demdem and VC Tani deliver interventions and engaging Yiwu officials led by Vice Mayor WANG. (Shanghai PCG photo)

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Consul Demdem and VC Tani with Filipino in-person delegate Alcala. (Shanghai PCG photo)

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