A new ad for Harbin Beer shows athletes playing sports with neighboring countries, urging people to look beyond national identity

Ad agency BBH Shanghai has created an emotional documentary-style advertising campaign for Chinese beer brand Harbin Beer which emphasizes the breakdown of the country’s national borders. China, which borders the most number of countries in the world (Russia, Mongolia, Vietnam, Myanmar and Kazakhstan) has strained relations with its neighbors. Culture and language divides keep residents in close geographical proximity apart.


In the ad, Harbin brings communities together by offering sports like soccer or canoeing to the borders: cue beautiful cinematography and dramatic music as the barriers break down. China makes new friends with its neighbors and shares a round of beers afterward. The agency left the sports equipment behind for the countries to continue their friendly relations after the Directors left, and although it is a sweet idea, it’s hard to know how likely it is that the camaraderie will continue off-camera.

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