Cracking China’s e-commerce market

19 October 2016
ITC News
ITC and Ali Baba launch guide for Asian firms to do e-commerce in China

As the largest e-commerce market in the world, China represents a huge opportunity for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Asian countries and beyond. However, for SMEs outside China to penetrate the Chinese market, they face a range of challenges.

In response to this, the International Trade Centre (ITC) and Alibaba has launched a practical guide to help Asian SMEs navigate the myriad of challenges they have to bypass to launch their products and services on Chinese e-commerce platforms.

E-Commerce in China: Opportunities for Asian Firm reviews the context of e-commerce development in China and identifies what is needed for foreign firms to enter the Chinese market.

The publication provides an overview of China’s cross-border e-commerce and the background of its rapid growth. It sets out how the development of e-commerce contributed to rural development in China and provides lessons of how inclusive growth can be applied by other countries, and how Asian SMEs can get a foothold on China’s e-commerce platforms.

E-Commerce in China will help SMEs in Asia – especially in least developed countries – increase their understanding about the significant opportunities presented by the rapid growth of China’s cross-border e-commerce and how to take advantage of this development to increase their trade with China.

Arancha González, Executive director of ITC said: ‘Working with Alibaba, ITC aims to facilitate improved access to e-commerce markets in China for SMEs in Asia and beyond. The ITC-Alibaba partnership aims to get SMEs onto this digital market using the lessons of the Chinese story.’

Hongbing Gao, Vice President of Alibaba Group and Director of AliResearch said: ‘Cross-border e-commerce undoubtedly represents the future of global trade, and Alibaba Group stands ready to help SMEs ride this wave and expand business globally. We hope this report will prove beneficial for businesses from developing and least developed countries in their quest for new international markets.’

According to China Internet Watch, China is projected to become the world’s largest cross-border e-commerce market by 2020. Despite the recent global financial crisis and the consequent sluggish growth in international trade, China’s cross-border e-commerce has maintained a growth rate of about 30%. From 2008 to 2015, its turnover grew from CNY 800 billion (around $123 billion) to CNY 5.2 trillion (around $0.8 trillion), and is expected to reach CNY 6.5 trillion (around $1 trillion) in 2016.

E-Commerce in China: Opportunities for Asian Firm was produced as part of ITC Enhancing Export capacities of Asian LDCs for Intra-regional Trade project, which is funded by the Ministry of Commerce of the Government of the People’s Republic of China.

Download a free copy ofE-Commerce in China: Opportunities for Asian Firm.