The Latin American Aerospace and Defense Exhibition is taking place in the Brazilian city of Rio de Janeiro, attracting defense manufacturers from over 80 countries, showing off their latest military products.
Chinese companies involved in the event have made a joint appearance, displaying some of their key products, including new guided weapon systems, long-range air-defense missiles and a series of new-concept weapons.
China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation, one of the major exhibitors of the event, is also showing off its emergency equipment portfolio.
Sales manager Luo Wei said emergency response products are going to be a popular choice in the Latin American market, where natural disasters have done much more damage through the years than wars have in the region.
"There are 16 models of our emergency products on this sand table. Four of them have been exported to Latin America. The products are used for civil and military transportation and applied in the relief work in natural disaster. And we have got some nice feedback from the buyers. A couple of Latin American countries have already used our products," Luo said.
Fu Yongcai is the assistant general manager with China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation.
He pointed out that although military products made in China are gaining more recognition across the world, their sales are still sluggish in Latin America.
"Previously, Latin American countries mainly use products made in Europe and America. Chinese products failed to win recognition in the Latin American market, and it's partly due to customers' usage habits. Besides, the overall payment ability of Latin American countries is comparatively weak. Some countries even asked for hundred percent financing, which is difficult for us to handle," Fu said.
One issue the Chinese defense contractors agree on is their products don't have brand recognition in the region.
Lai Zhiming, a senior consultant for China Poly Group Corporation, suggested this event in Rio should help fix that issue.
"I think they know little about China. When they talk about military products, the first thing that comes to their mind would be products from Europe and the U.S. They hardly think about China. So we come here together in the name of China Defense to jointly show the defense products made in China. I think it's useful to let more people know our products and make some preparations to compete in the market," Lai noted.
Despite the fact that Chinese products do not yet have much brand recognition, military enthusiasts in Brazil still seem to be impressed by the Chinese products on display.
"I admire China's military products. They are made with advanced technologies and there are always innovations. They set an example for other countries in the national defense field," said a visitor surnamed Costa, a pilot with Brazilian Air Force.
"The military products made in China that I see at the booth are amazing. The long-range air-defense missile impressed me a lot. I believe it can help China to defend its territory well," said another visitor.
More than 30,000 national defense officials, military officers and local residents are expected to visit the exhibition in Rio.