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China to show off its zeal to import but business awaits policies
Workers pave a road ahead of the China International Import Expo in Shanghai, China September 27, 2018. REUTERS/Aly Song

China to show off its zeal to import but business awaits policies

SHANGHAI :China will soon host a huge trade fair to highlight its commitment to free trade and show off its willingness to import, but sceptical foreign businesses and diplomats say they want to see concrete policy changes to improve market access.

The China International Import Expo, announced by President Xi Jinping in 2017, is aimed at calming mounting foreign concern about China’s trade practices and to signal its willingness to narrow its trade gap with the United States and others.

Authorities have been pulling out all the stops to ensure the success of the Nov. 5-10 trade fair in Shanghai.

But with a China-U.S. trade dispute deepening, sources familiar with the planning of the expo say that while many U.S. companies will attend, Washington is not planning to send any officials, though they have been invited.