Markham Business and Investment Mission to China A Success!
Strengthening political, economic and cultural ties between Markham and Chinese cities
Last December a 34-member business delegation, led by Markham Mayor Frank Scarpitti in collaboration with the Greater Toronto Chinese Business Association participated in a successful15-day mission to China and Hong Kong. The mission achieved its objectives to further strengthen and promote economic, business and cultural ties between Canada and China. The program focussed on a series of business meetings and events in the cities visited, as well as sector information sharing. Mayor Scarpitti and the delegation visited 7 major industrial and economic development zones in China and met with key dignitaries, and business executives
The delegation visited Markham’s key economic partners in Beijing, Tianjin, Shanghai, Suzhou, Wuhan, Huadu, Jiangmen, Nanhai, Shenzhen and Hong Kong.
Mayor Scarpitti was joined by Alan Ho, Markham’s Vice Chair of Economic Development Committee, Councillors and Senior Economic Development staff, as well as local business leaders representing the green tech, professional services (legal, accounting, architectural design), real estate and investment and higher education sectors.
“The scale and quality of technology development and innovative urban design in China are remarkable,” said Mayor Frank Scarpitti after touring Suzhou-Singapore Industrial Park, by far one of the most successful industrial parks and new urban development in China. “Our friends in China are ready to share their experiences with us and we can learn from each other.”
The delegation participated in highly successful business meetings and site visits in each city. During the visit to Markham’s twin city Wuhan, the capital of Hubei province, Wuhan Mayor Wan accepted Mayor Scarpitti’s invitation to visit Markham in Fall 2016 with a Wuhan business delegation to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the sister city agreement.
Markham’s delegation completed three days of successful business meetings in the western region of the Pearl River Delta, an important stop as a majority of the Chinese Canadians in Markham originate from this area.
In Jiangmen, Mayor Scarpitti and the delegation toured “Binjiang New City” for the unveiling of “Markham Road” and the dedication of a “Tree of Friendship”, to symbolize the international friendship of the two regions.
The Nanhai visit was highlighted by the official opening of another “Markham Road”, a beautifully landscaped roadway leading into the Nanhai Hi-Tech zone and university district.
The business mission concluded with three days of productive business activities in Hong Kong and Shenzhen. Team Markham co-hosted a business reception with the Canadian Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong with York University President and Vice-Chancellor Mamdouh Shoukri. York University alumni and local business executives were among the guests in attendance. The delegation also attended international business conferences in Hong Kong: InnoDesign Tech Expo, the World SME Expo and Hong Kong International Franchising Show, and the Business IP Asian Forum.
The mission wrapped up in Shenzhen, China’s high-tech capital, with a visit to the World Headquarters of Huawei Technologies and meetings with senior executives regarding opportunities to attract more investment in Markham. This was followed by a meeting at DJI, China’s largest drone manufacturer, to promote Markham as a location for future investment.
“Our visit to China has visibly strengthened our relationship and stature with our friendship cities and business partners,” said Ward 2 Councillor, Alan Ho, Vice Chair of Economic Development Committee. “Markham and Canada have received a lot of investor attention. We are looking forward to receiving business and community delegations from these cities in 2016.”