Belarusian producers urged to penetrate Chinese market more actively
12 November 2018
MINSK – Suppliers of Belarusian products should step up efforts to penetrate the Chinese market, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Belarus to China Kirill Rudy told the Belarus 1 TV channel, BelTA has learned.
According to the diplomat, the priority tasks are marketing, entering Chinese chain stores and opening retail outlets selling Belarusian products. If Belarusian companies sell their products ex warehouse, they become 5-8 times more expensive when they reach store shelves because of intermediaries. “In order to add value to their products and earn more, producers should reach out to end customers, set up production facilities and stores there; this should be done step by step while adapting products to the tastes of local consumers. There are stores selling Belarusian products in China, but these stores are opened by Chinese business people. The problem is that Belarusian suppliers still sell their products ex warehouses instead of trying to gain a foothold on the Chinese market. At the same time, Chinese business people are optimistic about market prospects of Belarusian products, they promote Belarusian brands and position Belarusian goods as eco-friendly and organic; they open stores with Belarusian brands. It is good for us, but we would like more money coming to Belarus,” Kirill Rudy said.
The ambassador noted that one of advantages of Belarus is that all the railways from China to the EU go through Belarus. “On the way back we can load these railway containers. Over the past three years, the number of such container trains skyrocketed 9 times, while the number of containers per se will approach 3,000 by the end of the year and is expected to make 5,000 at the end of 2020. Railway transportation is subsidized by Chinese authorities and its cost is close to that of maritime transportation, but railway offers faster delivery. As a result, our products transported by rail reach China faster than products from Australia or New Zealand that are delivered by sea, while the cost of transportation by rail is the same,” Kirill Rudy said.
He emphasized that China is the world's fastest growing market.” Today we compare Chinese cities with European countries. Beijing is like Sweden in terms of its GDP. It will be enough for us to saturate one city or one city district with our products. If we penetrate these communities, build up strategic relations and become recognizable, we will be able to stay there for good,” the diplomat added.