The 2014 ISH China & CIHE trade show, held May 13-15 at the New China Exhibition Center in Beijing, reported a record-setting 41,238 visitors from 40 countries and regions to the three-day event — an 11.3% increase from 2013. The top 10 visiting countries and regions include Germany, Hong Kong China, Iran, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mongolia, Russia, Taiwan and Turkey.

Organizers Messe Frankfurt (Shanghai) Co. and B & D Tiger Exhibition Co. reported the trade show attracted 999 exhibitors from 18 countries and regions. A total of six halls were utilized, covering 85,000 sq. meters (914,932 sq. ft.) of space, resulting in a 13.4% and 6.3% increase in both exhibitors and exhibition space, respectively, from 2013.

“With factors such as higher energy conservation and greater efficiency dictating the goals of China’s HVAC and plumbing sectors, the Beijing show’s significance has never been greater,” says Richard Li, general manager of Messe Frankfurt in China. “We are delighted to have gathered an astounding group of HVAC and plumbing experts and suppliers from around the world, particularly from Germany and Italy, to showcase their environmentally friendly and state-of-the-art products.”

Visitors were able to source items including wall-hung boilers, heat pumps, solar energy devices, radiators and fittings, heat exchangers, floor-heating systems, pipe, valves, ventilation systems, control systems and heat meters, as well as other energy-saving HVAC products.

With such a wide range of HVAC and plumbing solutions to offer, attendees were given the chance to source products and technologies for all areas of their business.

“At the fair, I noticed the solar heating industry is under transformation and has started to integrate its functions with heat pumps as well as wall-hung boilers,” notes Liang Min Bo, an engineer at Jiangsu Sunrain Solar Energy Co., which specializes in solar heating systems.

On the first day, select exhibitors, members of the press and other VIPs were welcomed by ISH China partners, including Andreas Lücke, chief executive officer, Federal Industrial Association of Germany House, Energy and Environmental Technology. Lücke’s group also is associated with the large ISH Frankfurt trade fair in Germany.

While quite a few American, Canadian and European companies are ISH China exhibitors — including A. O. Smith, Aquatherm, Bosch Thermotechnology, Caleffi, Calorique, Flextherm, Fulton, Grundfos, Honeywell, Lamborghini, Navien, REHAU, Superior Radiant Products, Utica Boilers, Watts Water Technologies, Weil-McLain and Wilo — their products aren’t being marketed to the United States. Global construction consulting firm Rider Levett Bucknall notes that global growth after the world-wide recession continues to be led by Asia, particularly China.

“China overtook the [United States] as the world’s largest construction market in 2010, and accounted for 18% of total global construction in 2012,” reports Stephen Ballesty, Rider Levett Bucknall’s director of research & development. “India is forecast to overtake Japan as the third-largest construction market by 2022. An estimated 270 million new homes will be needed in China and India alone by 2025 to meet the needs of population growth and urbanization trends.”


Energy efficiency, water conservation

Walking through the six halls of the trade show, the popular heating products displayed were tankless water heaters, wall-hung boilers, panel radiators in pastels and bright colors, heat pumps, radiant floor heating and condensing technology.

As China has severe water pollution and water shortage problems, several manufacturers were at the show touting their water-quality and water-conservation products. The importance of the water issue was illustrated by Swedish water purification manufacturer Bluewater’s tag line in its booth, “Turning tap water into healthy drinking water.”

Held in conjunction with ISH China were 50 events categorized into four major themes: technology exchange, idea innovation, match-making and technology display. One such event was the inaugural Building Water Supply and Drainage Forum, which was launched to help China’s building industry continue to integrate water supply and drainage systems into buildings. The theme for 2014 was “Rainwater Harvesting, Utilization and Drainage Management.”

Continuing its co-location with ISH China, the Sino European HVAC Congress was divided into five sessions focusing on central heating, individual heating, heat pump technology, floor heating and air-conditioning.

Li Hao, deputy director of the Floor-Heating Committee of the China Construction Metal Structure Association, told attendees that while China’s floor-heating industry is in a transitional time, it is growing and “catching up to European high-tech heating products.” Floor-heating products should be functional and sustainable, as well as compatible with renewable energies. More research into smart technologies is needed to be used properly in China’s built environment.

The current radiant trends in China are suspended panels, panel radiator and structural embedded pipe, notes Zhang Baohong, senior national vocational qualification assessor on the Floor-Heating Committee of the China Construction Metal Structure Association.

Mark Eatherton, executive director of the Mokena, Ill.-based Radiant Professionals Alliance, spoke via Skype during the International Floor-Heating Forum about how the development of a hydronic radiant installation standard will benefit the radiant and hydronics industry across the globe.

The next ISH China & CIHE Show will be May 13-15, 2015, in Beijing.