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“Buy Global, Sell Global”: Italian Edition
Post Time: 02/01/2018

The trade history between China and Italy can be traced back a long way. In ancient China, both the ancient Silk Road and the Maritime Silk Road ended in the ancient Roman Empire.

Thousands of years later, under the Belt and Road Initiative, trade between Yiwu and Italy has become more frequent than ever. According to Yiwu Customs, from January to October, Yiwu’s total exports to Italy reached 2.02 billion RMB, an increase of 1.79% over the same period in the previous year. The total import value was 31.99 million RMB.

Each month, Huang Changdong, a resin craft shop owner in Yiwu International Trade City, receives orders from Italy totaling over 200 thousand RMB. Similarly, Christmas product orders have continuously come in since the beginning of July. 

  Italy has become one of Yiwu’s most important European commercial partners. Take He Haimei, for example. She was among the earliest business people in Yiwu to get involved with overseas business. Her scarf business has been expanding throughout the years, and her products have been sold to over 30 countries in the Middle East, Africa, Southeast Asia, Europe, and North America. 

In June 2010, an Italian delegation headed by the deputy speaker of Milan, Stefano Di Martino, came to visit Yiwu. Di Martino mentioned that Italy imported a number of products from Yiwu and that this was especially true of the north of Italy, where almost 90% of Chinese products come from Yiwu.

Another example is a businessperson from a town close to Milan. Before he came to Yiwu, he was a clothing shop owner. In 2009, an Yiwu dealer invited him to come to Yiwu to do foreign trade.

  “Yiwu has provided me with many opportunities. Now, I have my own foreign trading company and have even opened a branch in Shanghai. Had I not come to Yiwu, I might still be a shop owner in a small town. And none of these things would have happened.”

Liu Jianbo went to Italy in 1993. For years, he sold clothing and electronics to Italy and to neighboring countries. In 2015, he came back to China with Italian household chemical products and opened a store named “Oupinhui.”

When his store first opened in 2015, the display hall only covered 100 m2, but in the store’s second year, that area expanded to 800 m2. Today, Oupinhui has branches in over ten Chinese cities.

Liu has also set up his own Italian brand. He registered his brand, DISHILIN, which sells “made-in-Italy” products, in Italy. Today, DISHILIN has developed two types of household chemical products—a drain cleanser and a toilet cleanser. The drain cleanser sells very well—its sales volume reaches over 50 thousand per month.

Liu said, “I hope that DISHILIN sells well in Italy and that more Chinese-made products can be exported to Italy and other countries through my display hall.”

Yiwu and Italy have had an unprecedented amount of active commercial interactions since long ago. Yiwu’s clothes, electronic products, hardware, and Christmas products are exceptionally popular in Italy. In terms of imports, Yiwu primarily imports household chemical products, leather products and furniture. (By Wang Ting, Translated by Sun Yin, edited by Xiamara Hohman)




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