context: Global vaccine cooperation and exporting PRC vaccines have become trade selling points in recent multilateral meetings, as Beijing’s vaccine diplomacy with developing countries grew over the past year. Given fading overseas demand for manufactured goods and COVID-related medical equipment, increasing exports of high-end and value-added services will help sustain longer-term trade growth.

2021 China International Fair for Trade in Services (CIFTIS) is taking place in Beijing (2-7 Sep 2021). According to China Comnews, discussions will be held during the Expo on digital commerce opportunities, the high-quality development of services, global tourism revitalisation and carbon-neutral economic development. Over 30 reports, standards and indices will be released, including 2020 China Services Trade Development Report and International Consumption Centre City Policy and Practice. The Expo will also establish a batch of allied platforms to promote sustainable development, like those addressing international alliances in public procurement, grain supply chains, financial regulation, TCM (traditional Chinese medicine) education, and ecological sustainability. A list of 70 firms, including Alibaba, Tencent, Pfizer and Philips, will display their new technologies and applications.

The Expo will present highly digitised display and transaction platforms, including digital construction sites, as well as smart cost analysis and self-driving delivery services. The section devoted to health services is new this year, and encompasses pandemic control and prevention, medical services, TCM and aged care. A series of new COVID-19 vaccines and testing kits produced by the Sinopharm Group will be on display, as well as other high-end medical tech including the integration of 5G tech into medical procedures and robotic surgery. Zhang Yuntao 张云涛 Sinopharm vice president expressed the hope of contributing to the construction of a global health shared community through the export of high-quality biopharma products. Sinopharm vaccine COVILO has been publicly registered in nine countries and approved for emergency use by 98 countries, regions and international organisations, reported Finance China.