APAC works as an internationalisation central hub covering all CEE countries and promoting their trade on the Chinese market and vice versa.
In 2012, China approached the countries of Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) with a proposal concerning regional cooperation in the ‘16+1’ format (16 CEE countries + China). Apart from opening the CEE region up for investments, the ‘16+1’ format was intended to facilitate the shaping of relations between China and the EU and to become a tool in building a positive image for China and the CEE countries. The new cooperation was formalized through establishment of APAC - based at the Ministry of Agriculture and Food of Bulgaria.
The Activities of APAC deepen and strengthen the cooperation in agriculture between China and the CEE countries on a mutually beneficial basis through sharing ideas, exchange of good practices and research for innovative solutions. Such cooperation broaden the horizons of the countries, helping them to find a sustainable model of agriculture, as well as to promote the development of trade in agricultural and food products between them. In order to promote the further development of trade relations in the agricultural sector between China and the CEE countries, APAC assists in opening of National Pavilions of CEE countries in the Shanghai Free-Trade Zone as a permanent trading platform.
The main stakeholders are Ministers of Agriculture of each CEE country. The main beneficiaries are SMEs in agriculture sector.
APAC is funded by the State budget. Its average annual budget is 106 177 euro. More than 50 mln. euros were attracted as Chinese investments for building of a the first Logistic Hub & 16+1 Pavilion in Bulgaria providing a place to exhibit and sell products along with logistics and transport.
Evidence of success
More than 128 companies received a support from ACAP for reaching the China markets.
Concrete results after openning 2 Bulgarian Pavilions in China are:
- More than 60 SMEs presented their production on China markets;
- 13 contracts between companies were signed.
The first 16+1 Logistics hub and Pavilion for e-trade of agriculture products in CEE, where a complete package for China-CEEC logistics services are available, was inaugurated at Bulgaria's Trakia Economic Zone near Plovdiv.
Potential for learning or transfer
The GP presents a policy mechanism for supporting internationalisation of agricultural SMEs from 16 countries of Central Eastern Europe on Chinese market.
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