A North East firm focused on supporting exports to China has signed a memorandum of understanding to open a second exhibition centre to promote UK trade.
Tyneside-based Fast Track China (UK) Ltd has made the agreement to open a centre in Changsha, a move which follows hot on the heels of its first exhibition centre in Zhengzhou in October.
And the agreement is expected to be followed with up to two more centres in key Chinese cities.
Richard Sice, chief executive of Fast Track China, said: “The second exhibition centre in Changsha will be a major development for us, as we continue to strengthen our ability to support British and European businesses wishing to export to China.”
In 2014, Fast Track China worked with the provincial government in Zhengzhou City to open its first centre, which aims to support two-way trade between businesses in the UK and Europe and China.
The organisation, which has teams of British and Chinese nationals working in both countries, has already held its first outbound trip to Zhengzhou, with British and European businesses participating in the mission with contracts expected to be signed as a result.
A second outbound mission is in the process of being organised for mid April, as well as an inbound visit of Chinese businesses looking to trade with the UK, visiting the North East in June.
Mr Sice said: “China has a population of 1.3 billion people and there is a strong demand for products from the UK, so the development of a network of exhibition centres has massive potential to support the efforts to grow trade links between our two countries.
“Trade between UK and China was $70 billion in 2013 and the Chinese Premier Li has called for this to reach $100 billion by the end of 2015, and we are proud to be at the heart of efforts to meet that target.”