A 16-strong delegation from Northern Ireland will be in China next week, to develop business and education relationships.
The mission which runs from 16-22 May includes a first time visit to Chongqing, one of China’s fastest growing business centres, as well as Beijing.
The visit, the latest in an ongoing programme of business activities in China organised by Invest NI, is being co-ordinated by staff at the agency’s office in Shanghai who have lined up business meetings for delegation members.
Each of the companies on the mission has a pre-arranged programme of meetings with executives from existing and potential customers in the Beijing and Chongqing areas. Included in the delegation is a senior representative of the University of Ulster, which has a longstanding academic relationship with universities in China. The university has an extensive programme of knowledge transfer as well as staff and student exchanges with universities there.
Most of the participating companies already have business in China. Those well-established in China include Andor Technology, a manufacturer of scientific cameras with an office in Beijing; APT, a leading supplier of audio solutions to radio stations across China; Foyle Language School, a provider of English language tuition; and Randox Laboratories which has a widespread distribution network for its diagnostic tests and bioarray systems.
Dr Vicky Kell, Invest NI Trade Director, commenting on the mission, said: “As one of the world’s fastest growing and most dynamic markets, China offers very significant business opportunities especially for Northern Ireland because of our longstanding expertise and experience in key sectors such as engineering, food and healthcare.
“China has long been recognised by Invest NI as an important marketplace for the very broad range of products and services provided by our companies.
“As a direct result of our programme of business activities in China over more than 10 years, many Northern Ireland companies now have very strong and rapidly developing trade and investment links across this huge and vibrant nation. China is currently one of Northern Ireland’s most important export markets.
“We all expect good business contacts to result from this mission and that most of the participating companies will return soon to follow these up and to develop worthwhile business here,” she added.
Invest NI works closely with commercial staff at the British Embassy in Beijing and also with the China Britain Business Council.