The Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) is reporting substantial progress in the trade organization’s efforts to facilitate the involvement of U.S. RV companies in the growth and development of the Chinese RV industry following a fourth trade mission to China.

According to a press release, RVIA President Richard Coon, RVIA Vice President and General Counsel Craig Kirby and RVIA Vice President of Standards and Education Bruce Hopkins visited Shanghai and Beijing June 19 to July 1 for a series of meetings with Chinese governmental agencies and other companies and organizations to discuss further establishing and growing the RV market within China.

One of the key achievements of the trip was the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between RVIA and the China Automotive Technology and Resource Center (CATARC) to work together on RV standards issues. As a technical administrative body in the auto industry and a technical support organization to the Chinese government, CATARC assists the government in such activities as auto and RV standards development and product certification testing.

The group met with RVIA in Beijing on June 24 to discuss the current voluntary minimal RV standard developed by CATARC and to receive a briefing from Hopkins on the NFPA 1192 standard.

“This Memorandum of Understanding with CATARC is a significant step toward developing a more formal RV standard for China that is harmonized with our North American standards, which would be a boost to U.S. RV manufacturers and suppliers interested in doing business in the Chinese RV market,” said Coon.

In other key meetings, RVIA met with:

“¢ The China Association of Automobile Manufacturers to discuss RVIA’s role on a new RV committee formed by the organization.

“¢ The China Ministry of Transport to discuss road use regulations pertaining to RVs.

“¢ The Shanghai Tourism Administration to discuss their RV and campground projects and to visit a potential campground site.

China Travel Services, the country’s leading travel services provider which operates an expansive campground near Beijing (which RVIA toured), to explore how the company can work with RVIA and its member companies.

“¢ China National Tourism Administration representatives who are planning to establish an RV association and would like for RVIA to participate.

“These were very productive meetings that allowed us to begin addressing some of the regulatory and market barriers limiting the involvement of U.S. companies in the Chinese RV market,” said Coon. “We were also able to further develop relationships with key contacts to lay the groundwork for future efforts. And, we added to our knowledge of the Chinese RV market and business culture. It was a very successful trip.”

In addition, RVIA also met with foreign commercial services officers from the U.S. Embassy to enlist their support of RVIA’s efforts and scouted potential office locations while in Beijing.