• Chinese Consumers Buying Imported Goods

Chinese Consumers Buying Imported Goods (Photo : Getty Images)

Many students in Australia are taking advantage of the high demand Chinese consumers have for foreign goods, according to an article by Today Online.

Like Us on Facebook

In fact, some of these individuals have cashed in on the opportunity and even grew their business.

Such is the case with Zhang Yuan, who attended college in Australia. Zhang’s small business started with carrying out favors for relatives back in China and made extra cash from the small amount of commission she charged. Now, Zhang has grown her business from a one-woman operation into a legitimate affair that earns over $300,000 a year.

In addition, Zhang’s business has offices in Melbourne and Hangzhou, and has two buyers, packers, and customer service representatives. Her target market is now health-conscious and affluent Chinese women.

“The Chinese have always had blind adoration for foreign things,” Zhang, who is now 25, told Today Online in an exclusive interview.

“So rather than paying for expensive, made-in-China products that might lack safety, why wouldn’t they buy high-quality Australian ones at lower prices?”

Aside from university students, recent graduates in Australia have also joined the cottage industry to fill the need for highly sought-after Australian products. These entrepreneurs call themselves “daigou” or “purchasing agents.” It has become a lucrative business, with some analysts estimating that daigou have sent Australian products worth approximately $600 million to China last year.

“Just through the daigou’s own personal networks, they enable a new market for a small- and medium-sized business in Australia,” Peter Cai, a fellow at Sydney-based think tank Lowy Institute, told Today Online.

The daigou, however, have critics in both Chinese and Australian shores. Some question whether the activity is within the law, and if they are paying required taxes or meeting certain regulations.

For the meantime, it looks like there is no stopping the daigou. Some Australian companies have already reached out to Chinese students to showcase their products. Retailers in China have also touched base with the daigou to access their personal networks.