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The world's first national-level supply chain expo, the China International Supply Chain Expo (CISCE) and Global Supply Chain Innovation and Development Forum, kicked off in Beijing on Tuesday, amid sluggish economic growth in the world.

The expo is a new open platform built for the international business community to strengthen exchanges and cooperation in industrial and supply chains, and a global public good shared by the world, said Ren Hongbin, president of the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT), at the opening ceremony.

Ren added that the event will be held on a yearly basis and hoped that people from home and abroad will make full use of the platform and achieve fruitful results.

Some of the impacts we are facing on the supply chain actually exposed the fragility of the global production networks, said Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, director-general of the World Trade Organization (WTO), who participated in the ceremony and delivered a speech online.

Therefore, internationalization in global trade and trade and supply chains should be strengthened, so that all links can play a role, the WTO official added.

Indonesian President Joko Widodo said that Indonesia welcomes the first CISCE and hoped that the expo can help build a resilient supply chain system.

Highlights of the CISCE

The five-day event, with the theme of "Connecting the World for a Shared Future," will showcase new key technologies, products and services in the upstream, midstream and downstream sectors of global supply chains.

The inaugural expo welcomed 515 Chinese and foreign enterprises and institutions, participating in the exhibition for five supply chains – smart vehicles, green agriculture, clean energy, digital technology and healthy living – accompanied by a supply chain service exhibition area.

Among the exhibitors, 26 percent are international companies, with U.S. firms accounting for around 20 percent of them.

The expo will display advanced technologies, products and future trends in each link of the supply chain vertically, as well as diverse services provided by the platform enterprises and services in finance and logistics sectors horizontally, said Zhang Shaogang, vice chairman of CCPIT.

Zhang added that 53 of the Global 500 companies and 57 of China's top 500 companies are participating in the exhibition.

An initiative released

An initiative, dubbed the Beijing Initiative on Global Industrial and Supply Chain Connectivity, was launched during the opening ceremony.

It called for adhering to market principles, strengthening global division of labor and cooperation, advancing technological innovation and facilitating collaboration on green and digital economy, and also advocated for the global business community to focus on common interests and integrate into the global industrial, supply and value chains.

Additionally, the CCPIT will release a report, which will analyze global supply chain development trends.