The Canton Fair is the biggest trade fair held in Guangzhou, China. It is here that all businesses wishing to promote themselves in China come twice a year, in the Spring and in the Autumn.
Being such an important event there are quite stringent procedures to follow if a business owner wishes to attend. It is best to get an invitation and these can be obtained from several places such as The Economic & Commercial Councillors office of the People’s Republic of China Embassy or the Local Representative offices of the China Council for the Promotion of international Trade.
They will require all the company details and if a business wishes to attend from abroad they will need to apply two months in advance. It is possible for a business to attend without an invitation but they must register in advance. There is a service charge for this and it is valid for just twelve days. This way of doing it is not recommended due to the large number of people applying to attend.
The deadlines for applying for an invitation are 30th September for the Autumn Fair and 30th March for the Spring Fair. The invitations are sent out by post and three people from each company may attend on one invitation.
Visitors from abroad will require a visa to enter China. Once you have a visa, if you don’t want to pay an extortionate amount for a hotel, then book up early. When the Canton Fair is on, some hotels put their rates up by 400 percent.
The last thing to do is to register with the Canton Fair. You must supply your invitation and all your personal documents, plus a photograph and then you will receive the visitors pass which ensures entry into the Canton Fair.