27 June 2022In a virtual business matchmaking session hosted by Standard Bank and the Industrial & Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) in collaboration with the China and Africa Economic and Trade Expo (CAETE), 73 Standard Bank business clients from 9 African markets showcased their goods to over 200 Chinese importers gathered at Changsha in Hunan Province, China..Standard Bank and equity partner the ICBC have, for over a decade, collaborated in the construction of Africa and China’s most formidable trade platform. Part of this increasingly significant global trade capability includes “assisting African exporters find off-takers in China, Africa’s largest trading partner,” says Philip Myburgh, Head of Africa China Banking at Standard Bank.To this end, Standard Bank hosts quarterly Africa-China export matchmaking sessions, providing Standard Bank business clients across Africa virtual and assisted access to the heart of China’s domestic economy..“The beauty of the virtual sessions is that Standard Bank clients, regardless of where they are in Africa, can interact directly with potentially hundreds of product off-takers in China, without having to leave their businesses or homes,” says Myburgh.Gone are the days of would-be African exporters struggling to get visas to China, getting on a plane, taking samples to China, finding, and paying for accommodation and transport – and then dealing with language, translation, and access challenges once there. While virtual matchmaking sessions eliminate the logistical and cost barriers for African exporters to access China’s domestic market, “Standard Bank’s equity partner, ICBC, removes networking and marketing challenges by matching African exporters with pre-selected, relevant, quality off-takers from across China,” says Myburgh..Hosted quarterly in different locations in China, the most recent Africa-China virtual export matchmaking session saw potential Chinese off-takers physically gathered by ICBC in the Changsha International Convention & Exhibition Centre. Then, once again assisted by ICBC and working closely with the Chinese government, “African exporters were correctly matched with the right Chinese off-takers during three, 20-minute, translation-supported introduction and negotiation sessions,” adds.In little under two hours over 100 African export deals were negotiated with 62 Chinese importers. “African exports showcased and successfully taken up by Chinese importers during the May 2002 matchmaking session included coffee, sesame, soy, maize, nuts, beef, rooibos tea, wine, timber, cocoa, spices and canned food,” said Myburgh. “Further commitments are expected to be finalised in the weeks and months following the virtual export matchmaking session,” he added..Hunan Province with its purpose-built, China-wide, agri-processing, technology and distribution reach is the Chinese government’s officially designated Africa-China trade and import hub. The province has been officially designated by the Chinese government to assist the world’s second-largest economy achieve its stated aim of importing over US$300 billion in African products, goods and services over the next three years. To achieve this, President Xi Jinping recently announced that China was also willing to provide trade loans to African exporters to the tune of US$ 10 billion.“Standard Bank’s Africa-China trade capability provides the ideal platform for African producers, businesses and service providers considering export, to effortlessly access Africa’s largest trading partner,” says Myburgh..Standard Bank’s relationships with ICBC, CAETE, the Government of Hunan Province and BRICS has been purposely built, nurtured, and practically leveraged to collectively enable African growth in a mutually beneficial format. “These business relationships, linking the people, economies, cultures and futures of Africa and China together, are purposely focused on driving Africa’s growth,” concludes Myburgh.See also Philip Myburgh, Head of Trade and Africa-China at Standard Bank’s Business and Commercial Clients’ division on CNBC Africa addressing the significance of Africa-China Export Matchmaking sessions for African growth and development. https://www.cnbcafrica.com/media/6306338523112/ENDS.