No visitor to Milipol this year could fail to notice the strong presence of exhibitors from China: not only giants such as state-owned Norinco, but also some small and medium enterprises for whom this was a first or second experience as a Milipol exhibitor.
For example, Shenzhen Qili Technology Development Co., whose trademark is QDC Covert, is a small (50-employee) company, launching a new product at the show: a small ruggedized radio communications system with the Smartear earpiece developed for the People’s Liberation Army (PLA). Smartear looks like an ordinary earplug “except that our digital signal processing reduces environmental noise but amplifies the voice,” Cui Wei, the sales manager, told me.
Beijing Toptech Technology Co.—another small (30-employee) private company which, like QDC Covert, had exhibited once before at Milipol—showed me what they euphemistically called a “long-range acoustic device.” In fact, Wang Jing, the vice general manager, explained these are devices used by law enforcement units to disperse crowds. “They make a really, really loud noise which hurts your ears so you have to move away,” she said.
They also make a portable radar that uses advanced ultra-wideband radar detection, array antenna data fusion and three-dimensional modeling techniques to penetrate building walls and see if there is a person behind. The company was not allowed to bring any of its equipment into France, so you had to rely on posters and brochures, which is not quite the same thing.
One first-time visitor was Jihua 3502 Career Apparel of Shijiazhuang City, apparently the principal supplier of clothes to the PLA. Gavin Zhang, the deputy general manager, said the company used to be part and parcel of the PLA until about 12 years ago, but now belongs to the state-owned enterprise Xin Xing Jihua International Trading Co. The latter has 37 subsidiaries classified into six business departments—including professional clothes, textile dye printing, leather shoes, professional shoes, guarding devices, logistics and trade—and employs over 60,000 people.