Leading traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) producer and retailer
TongRenTang on Monday announced plans to expand its overseas chain
to 100 stores by 2008.
The company already has 22 shops in 14 nations and looks to
expand the overseas market for its medicines, said Xie Suhua,
company general engineer.
Last year TongRenTang exported to more than 40 countries and
regions achieving about 70 million yuan (US$8.9 million) in
Xie said TongRenTang's expansion would include "flagship
pharmacies" designed to tighten control of its overseas TCM market
The 300-year-old company was also considering opening its first
pharmacy in Japan as well as preparing for on-line sales.
Xie said the global expansion plan faced serious challenges as
the Republic of Korea and Japan were active in staking their own
claims to herbal medicines which was the essence of TCMs.
But some medical experts in China were publicly disparaging of
TCMs proclaiming that "the Chinese no longer need the medicine and
it's time to bid it farewell."
"Chinese medicine is at a crucial point now but we're optimistic
of running the industry as our ancestors did 300 years ago," said
Song Weiqing, deputy manager of the company.
The medicinal effects of TCMs were widely recognized
internationally and were being developed with new technologies,
Modern TCM was no longer made in small workshops and tasted by
experts but manufactured to international standards on production
lines, Song explained.
(Xinhua News Agency November 21, 2006)