October 20 2020

Cross-Border E-Commerce Retail Imports Play Increasingly Bigger Role in China’s Supply Chains

Source: HKTDC Research

As Covid-19 continues to rampage around the world unchecked and the global economy goes into recession, the Chinese central government has put forward the “dual circulation” strategy to boost the country’s development. China will take the domestic market as the mainstay while letting internal and external markets boost each other. Against this backdrop, it is expected that expansion and upgrading of the mainland consumer market will be a major force driving the “dual circulation” model, with cross-border e-commerce (CBEC) retail imports serving as an important link connecting the domestic consumer market with the international supply chain. In early 2020 when the coronavirus swept through China, CBEC imports, providing mainland consumers with a fast, convenient and safe source of quality products from all over the world, were extremely popular. According to customs figures, from January to May 2020, the value of CBEC retail imports grew by 23% year on year.

In order to learn about post-pandemic opportunities in mainland CBEC retail imports, HKTDC Research talked recently with the Tmall Global TeamTmall Global is a leading CBEC platform in China, featuring over 25,000 brands from 92 countries and regions. All these run B2C online stores on the platform selling goods to Chinese consumers. The company also runs a direct import supermarket called Tmall Global TDI Store. This store purchases imported goods directly from suppliers and sells them to mainland consumers in the form of B2B2C. The Tmall Global Team analysed the latest developments of China’s CBEC retail imports supply chain, explained how important it is for businesses to adapt to digitalised supply chains in the new retail era, and pointed out how small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can act as first movers in grasping opportunities in the mainland CBEC retail imports market.

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