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January 17, 2020

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US-China partnership in retail ‘important’

It is of great importance for the United States and China to deepen collaboration and exchange ideas in retail industry as both sides can learn a lot from each other on this front, an expert from US National Retail Federation (NRF) said.

“We want to see free trade not just of goods but also of ideas. I think that’s very important for the retail industry,” Mark Mathews, vice president of research development and industry analysis at the NRF, said during the Retail’s Big Show in New York earlier this week.

The expo NRF 2020 Vision featured over 800 companies from nearly 100 countries and regions. The event was aimed to offer new ideas, perspectives and technologies to global industry insiders.

“We all believe we can learn a lot from what’s happening in China,” said Mathews, noting there are many changes and innovation happening in Chinese retail industry, such as the introduction of payment technology, which benefits both the consumer and retailer.

The veteran retail expert attributed China’s rapid innovation to the country’s “focus on economic growth and doing the right thing for economic growth,” adding the new trends in China’s retail also provide great opportunities for US businesses.

Mathews said the global retail industry is experiencing a major tendency of cross-border collaborations in terms of company level.

“We are seeing retailers getting together and combining and creating consortium,” he said, adding it is expected to see more alliances of retailers across countries in the future so that they could have more competitiveness.

Calling the Retail’s Big Show “a melting pot of ideas,” Mathews underscored the importance of exchange and communication in order to strengthen cooperation in the sector and promote the industry.

“We all learn from each other. We learn about things that can help us do our jobs better and help our industry grow faster,” he stressed.

The three-day event attracted nearly 4,000 people from all over the world, including exhibitors, industry visitors, experts and speakers, according to the organizer.

As pioneers in reshaping the retail landscape, over a dozen Chinese companies, including Lenovo, Qingdao Hisense, Sunmi Tech and Wintec System, joined the grand show with high-quality hardware facilities and retail solutions designed to enhance modern user experience.

Mathews said he welcomes more Chinese exhibitors to come and share their perspectives in the industry.

“I certainly hope that we have more Chinese people here. It’s good for us and it’s good for China,” he said.


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