Global trade venture to four Chinese cities can help companies access markets

MADISON, WI. Jan. 29, 2018 – The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) is inviting Wisconsin companies seeking to start or expand their exporting efforts to take part in a global trade venture to China from April 13-25.

The trade trip will include segments in Shanghai, Ningbo, Guangzhou and Beijing. In each city, participants will be scheduled for customized business meetings with potential local partners hand-picked for their businesses by Wisconsin’s authorized trade representatives in China. Each participant also will receive an individualized market assessment to help their company develop a specific strategy for entering or expanding in the Chinese market.

“In 2017, Wisconsin companies exported more than $1.5 billion in goods and services to China, a double-digit increase over the previous year,” said Katy Sinnott, WEDC’s vice president of international business development. “It’s clear there is a demand for our products and a real opportunity for Wisconsin companies to grow their business in China. This trade venture, coupled with support from WEDC’s international experts, will help ensure that companies have the tools they need to take advantage of those opportunities.”

While the trade venture is open to companies in all industries, Sinnott said there is a strong demand in China for Wisconsin exports in medical and scientific instruments, water technology, industrial machinery and electrical machinery.

With a greater metropolitan area population of 34 million, Shanghai is China’s business and financial hub. Located in eastern China at the mouth of the Yangtze River, it is home to the world’s busiest container port.

Located just to the south of the Yangtze River delta is Ningbo, with a population of 3.5 million in the city proper and 7.6 million in the metro area. Since 2006, Ningbo and Milwaukee have had an agreement in place to encourage business, education and cultural exchange between the two cities. Ningbo is a major source of China’s exports in electrical products, textiles, food and industrial tools.

Guangzhou is the most developed city in southern China, with a population of 13.5 million. The city is the heart of Chinese manufacturing, and its proximity to Hong Kong makes it vibrant, progressive and cosmopolitan.

The program will conclude in the capital city of Beijing. With a population of 22 million, Beijing is the political, cultural and educational center of the country, as well as a technological research center and a major financial and insurance hub. With high per-capita income and a growing middle class, Beijing is a promising market for Wisconsin products, especially those that promote efficiencies and/or clean and sustainable urban living.

The fee for the trade venture is $2,700 for the first participant from each company and $3,100 for each additional participant. The fee covers market research and one-on-one appointments, transportation to business meetings, hotel accommodations for the duration of the program, country briefings and some group meals. The registration deadline is Feb. 19.

WEDC also is still accepting registrations for its global trade venture to Canada, which runs from March 18-23. The cities included in that trip, Toronto and Winnipeg, were specifically chosen because their economic strengths align with Wisconsin’s own. The registration deadline for that trip is Friday, Feb. 2.

To register, or for more information on either trade venture, visit