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Chongqing and Zurich Becoming Sister Provinces

Approved at the second session of the Standing Committee of the Fourth Chongqing People's Congress, Chongqing and Zurich became the sister provinces on March 27.
Due to the strengthening economic cooperation between Chongqing and Switzerland recently and under the help of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China and the Chinese Embassies and Consulates in Switzerland, the cooperation between Chongqing and Zurich State has been getting closer and closer. In 2012, the total imports & exports of Chongqing to Switzerland was close to USD 94.94 million, so Switzerland becomes one of the important technical sources of Chongqing in the European Union. In April 2012, the Lieutenant Governor and the Minister of the Ministry of Economic Affairs of Zurich State, headed a delegation to visit Chongqing. Huang Qifan, the Mayor of Chongqing, met the delegation. And they had a full communication for cooperation. Later the both sides signed the letter of intent on becoming sister provinces.
Given the particular financial backgrounds of Switzerland and Zurich State, Chongqing pays special attention to the cooperation with the financial institutions of the Zurich State for development of friendly relations with the Zurich State. The leader of the Europe Division of the Foreign Affairs and Overseas Chinese Affairs Office of Chongqing says that currently Chongqing is persuading some large financial institutions of Zurich State to set up offices in Chongqing. In addition, in accordance with the agreement signed by the both sides, the economic, scientific and technologic relations in the fields of precision mechanics, environmental protection, environmental technology, trade, life sciences, urban and regional development etc., will be further developed. So far Zurich State has proposed to build a green industry demonstration park in Chongqing for development of cyclic economy. The project is now in the preliminary survey.
At present, Chongqing has 14 sister cities in Europe, 9 of city level, and 5 of district/county level. The first is Toulouse concluded in 1982. By now, almost 300 European enterprises have invested in Chongqing, including approximately 50 Fortune Global 500 enterprises. About 20 members of the Mayor's Economic Advisory Group of Chongqing are senior executives of European transnational enterprises. UK, Denmark and Hungary have also set up the consulate generals in Chongqing. In the last year, the tourists from Europe to Chongqing reached 410,000 person times.
   

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