China is set to be feted at international TV event Mipcom after being named the 2018 Country of Honor.

There will be a raft of conference panel discussions as well as multiple showcases of the latest Chinese programs and a Chinese-themed Opening Night Welcome Reception at the event, which runs in Cannes, France from October 15-18.

More than 110 companies and close to 200 delegates are expected from China as well as the largest-ever China Pavilion. It comes as China recently became the second largest television market in the world, overtaking the UK, behind the U.S. A study from IHS Markit reported that China spent $10.9B on television programming in 2017 compared to $10 billion in the UK with TV broadcasters spending $6.4B as well as online giants Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent investing $4.5B.

Previous Mipcom countries of honor include Japan, Russia, Turkey and Mexico.

“China has now emerged as a major producer and consumer of film and television. We have confidence and the capacity to play the leading role at Mipcom, present to the world great Chinese stories and work with our colleagues around the globe to usher in a better future,” said Mrs. Ma Li, Director General of the International Cooperation Department of the National Radio and Television Administration, People’s Republic of China.

“The Chinese television and entertainment sector has a special place within the Mipcom and Mip TV community going back to 2004 when Mip TV welcomed the largest-ever delegation of Chinese TV executives at an international television market. As Mipcom 2018 Country of Honour, China will be showcasing its wide range of programme genre destined for international television channels,” said Laurine Garaude, Director of Reed MIDEM’s Television Division.

“In recent years we have seen the growth in Chinese shows being presented at our events for sale to international broadcasters and an increase in cross-border partnerships between Chinese and international producers. We anticipate that the trend towards Chinese content being exported to international territories will speed up over the next two to three years and we are very keen for Mipcom and Mip TV to be part of that process,” she added.