As the population becomes more affluent, the demand for wine in China continues to rise dramatically. Although wine is not a traditional beverage, China's consumers are increasingly open to new tastes and experiences from other parts of the world. Coupled with a thriving domestic wine-producing industry, wine imports have contributed to China's rising wine consumption and have become increasingly profitable. However, importing and exporting wine to China requires adhering to certain regulations.
Obtain a well-researched market report on the consumption of wine in China. Although the demand for wine in China is increasing, there is still a lack of knowledge about the varieties of wines available. This may influence which types of wine you wish to import.
Establish your wine import business as a joint venture. A joint venture with a Chinese business partner is the most common business model for import and export firms. Having a business partner in China will allow you to take advantage of his or her knowledge of the Chinese market as well as any business networks and contacts.
Register your joint venture with the local authorities before conducting any business activities. With the aid of a legal representative, you must submit a series of documents to both the State Administration for Industry and Commerce as well as the local Ministry of Commerce. It typically takes six to eight weeks to complete the registration procedure.
Obtain a well-established distributor. The wine market will vary among provinces, so it is important to find a knowledgeable distributor in this field. The demand for wine is typically highest in areas of high income such as large cities and the eastern provinces.
Obtain permission for the exporting of alcoholic beverages from the relevant authorities in the United States. The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax Bureau requires exporters to obtain a wholesaler's basic permit. For wine that is exported directly from other countries, export licensing laws will vary.
Abide by the regulations of the importing of alcoholic beverages into China. Any imported wine must abide by China's labelling standards, taxation, sanitation and licensing requirements. The Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) as well as the Certification and Accreditation Administration (CNCA) regulates and manages these procedures.