GUANGZHOU, April 15 (Xinhua) -- The 115th Canton Fair opened on Tuesday in south China's Guangzhou City.
The opening follows data releases showing China's exports and imports both fell sharply in March. But many exhibitors remain optimistic as they expect a steady increase in trade driven by more consumer-oriented innovation.
"Although the overall data slumped, Haier managed to grow slightly in March year on year," said Sun Shubao, a senior executive of Haier Group, one of China's leading home appliances firms.
Sun attributed Haier's resilience to customer care. "We have kept innovating to satisfy our consumers worldwide," he said.
Meanwhile, China will continue to increase its support for foreign trade to ensure stable growth, said Zhong Shan, deputy director of the Canton Fair.
About 24,581 exhibitors from China and 43 other countries and regions are present at the fair, up 64 from the previous session. It has an exhibition area of 1.17 million square meters and 59,708 booths, up 169 from the previous session.
The fair will last until early May, and is split into three sessions, with the first running April 15-19, the second April 23-27 and the third May 1-5.