Shanghai is speeding up preparations for the first China International Import Expo slated for November, with a target to develop itself into an "international exhibition capital."
A leading group has been formed to handle coordination among different departments for the preparation of the expo, Shang Yuying, director of Shanghai Municipal Commission of Commerce, told a press conference Tuesday.
By the end of March, more than 1,600 businesses from over 120 countries and regions had registered to attend the expo, with exhibitors exceeding 600 in an exhibition area of 120,000 square meters.
"We will make increased efforts in consumption, trade, and opening up to make better use of the influence brought by the expo," said Shang.
She said the city will accelerate local legislation on the exhibition industry, reforming the administrative application system and efforts to provide high-level services in the sector.
In 2017, Shanghai organized over 1,000 exhibitions, bringing in over 120 billion yuan (19 billion U.S. dollars) of revenue related to the sector.