Volunteers of the second China International Import Expo pass a poster at the National Exhibition and Convention Center in Shanghai, Nov 3, 2019. [Photo/Xinhua]

SANTIAGO — The China International Import Expo (CIIE) serves as a solid platform to bolster the image of Chilean products and grow their popularity among Chinese consumers, an export manager from a Chilean wine company has said.

The CIIE “reinforces the image of companies, so that consumers remain with a strong memory of the fact that there are wines in Chile,” said Rodrigo Sepulveda, manager of exports to Asia and Latin America of the Chilean winery Balduzzi.

For this reason, the manager stressed the importance of such events as CIIE, which he said can help importers generate greater strength for their products and increase their brand popularity in highly competitive markets.

“You will not see it directly in the money, but in the convergence you achieve with your distribution channels,” said Sepulveda, who has been exporting wine to China for 17 years.

Chile “is important for China in terms of wine consumption,” although their products are not yet the first choice for Chinese consumers, Sepulveda added.

The representative of the vineyard, situated in the Maule Valley in central Chile, attended the second CIIE in 2019 as part of the Chilean pavilion, headed by the Chilean Wine Association and ProChile.

Despite the raging pandemic, Sepulveda said, the crisis has brought opportunities to the wine market with an increase of online sales, thanks to “all the tools that the Chinese people have and which they manage much better than the rest of the world.”

Sepulveda expressed the hope that his company will export about 10 percent of their wine products to China at the end of this year.

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Chile is one of the world”s leading wine exporters. Between January and September this year, 671.8 million liters of Chilean wine were shipped abroad, according to the Office of Agrarian Studies and Policies at Chile’s Ministry of Agriculture.

In September, Chile’s wine exports totaled 80 million liters, up 25 percent year-on-year, as the sector was recovering from a decline in shipments in previous months due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Via China Daily