Canton Fair 2023 Allows Participants from Abroad Post Zero-COVID

By Lars James Hamer, January 29, 2023

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This year’s Canton Fair, the largest international trading event in the world, will welcome foreigners from outside of the Chinese mainland to attend in person for the first time since 2019. 

The Canton Fair, also known as the China Import and Export Fair (中国进出口商品交易会), was canceled in 2020 and 2022 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 2021 Canton Fair was conducted online and offline, but foreigners outside of the Chinese mainland could not visit due to strict quarantine requirements for overseas arrivals. 

The online exhibition will still go ahead, running from March 16 to September 15. 

The first phase of the 133rd Canton Fair is scheduled to begin on April 15 and end on April 19. 

Phases two and three will run from April 23-28 and May 1-5, respectively. 

It is estimated that over 180,000 buyers will make the pilgrimage to Guangzhou to source products from over 60,000 suppliers.

Those outside of China wishing to visit Guangzhou for the fair will need to apply for a Chinese visa. 

Over 24,000 of China’s best foreign trade corporations and enterprises have taken part in the fair in previous years, mainly looking to export trades and services, although some import business is conducted at the fair, too. 

The 2023 Canton Fair will also be the first time it will be held in the new exhibition hall (established in 2022) in the Pazhou exhibition center (No.382, Yuejiang Zhong Road, Guangzhou, China).

Exhibition categories for the different phases are as follows: 

Phase 1

Electronics & Household Electrical Appliances, Lighting Equipment, Vehicle Spare Parts, Machinery, Hardware & Tools, Building Materials, Chemical Products, Energy Resources

Phase 2

Consumer Goods, Gifts, Home Decorations

Phase 3

Textiles & Garments, Shoes, Office Supplies, Cases & Bags and Recreation Products, Medicines, Health Products & Medical Devices, Food

The Canton Fair runs twice per year, the previously mentioned three phases of the Spring session are in April and May, and the Autumn sessions are held in October and November. 


[Cover image via Flickr]

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