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City of Seattle

March 14, 2:02 PM click here to comment > 8

Opportunity, Education and Green Innovation in Chongqing

I love local issues. I got started in Seattle politics working on behalf of my neighbors on the Greenwood Community Council, fighting to get sidewalks for our streets and making sure we had the right kind of development in our neighborhood. Working with the public and neighborhoods is one of the best parts of my job as mayor. I enjoy going to town halls, hearing from the community about their concerns, and taking action to help make life better for residents of our city. I’ve made giving our kids a good education a priority through the Families and Education Levy and the Attendance Campaign. I’m passionate about supporting our local businesses through the Seattle Jobs Plan.

That’s why I’m taking next week to go to Chongqing, China. It’s an opportunity to promote our innovative local businesses, deepen our cultural ties, and help more of Seattle’s children get the chance to study abroad. I was approached by community and business leaders about the importance of the mayor of Seattle leading a delegation to Chongqing, which has been our sister city since 1983. My trip, which is funded by the Trade Development Alliance and the city of Chongqing, gives me a chance to help create new opportunities for Seattle residents in one of the world’s fastest growing cities.

My trip will be focused on education and green innovation. I will be meeting with education officials in Chongqing to establish school partnerships and to generate scholarships that will allow students in Seattle who would be unable to afford an overseas trip to study abroad in Chongqing this summer. These scholarships, supported by OneWorld Now!’s Seattle Strong campaign, can help develop our next generation of global leaders. That’s a great opportunity for our kids.

We have great local businesses, leaders in their fields, that see opportunity in Chinese markets. Our delegation can help provide them with new business and create jobs here in Seattle. In Chongqing I will join representatives from local architecture and design firms, non-profit research firms and organizations developing green building technologies to exchange information and best practices on sustainable development and green building with professionals and government officials in Chongqing. The cities that innovate energy-efficient, low-carbon practices are the cities that will compete in the global economy by exporting that knowledge.

The trip is also an opportunity to honor our sister city relationship and thank Chongqing for their $1.2 million investment in the Seattle Chinese Garden. Located at South Seattle Community College, the Seattle Chinese Garden celebrates Chinese heritage and culture. It’s one of the largest Chinese gardens outside of China, and we appreciate Chongqing’s generosity in supporting this addition to our cultural landscape.

For over a century China and other Asian countries have been an important part of our local economy, our culture, and our community. We now have the chance to expand those links in the 21st century in Chongqing and create new opportunities for the people of Seattle.

Posted by: Mayor Mike McGinn

Comments

Comment from Ming Zhang
Time March 17, 2012 at 9:11 am

We just can not separate local economy from globalization in 21 century. In order to promoting and improve local economy, we have to look beyond just local. The best way to do business with China is building relationships with their government first, the most effective way to do that is through our government support. Thank you Mayor McGinn for leading this effort.

Comment from Paul Marioni
Time March 19, 2012 at 1:00 pm

I appreciate your fostering good relations not only with our Sister City in China, but with are fellow citizens in Seattle also. Thank you.

Comment from Tom Schlosser
Time March 19, 2012 at 1:08 pm

Our family and a small tour group respresented Seattle’s Coe Elementary school visiting its sister school in Chongqing in 1991. They gave us a royal welcome.

Comment from tenzin
Time March 19, 2012 at 1:34 pm

Please raise the human rights also besides the business. thast our moral stand. 30 tibetan have self immolated and we can’t keep silent.

Comment from Pam Wilson
Time March 19, 2012 at 3:12 pm

Another way to build a relationship would be to do an exchange of teachers. I would be the first to sign up to go to China.

Comment from Sherrie Quinton
Time March 19, 2012 at 3:26 pm

While you’re there why not ask the Chinese to respect property rights. Our business here in Seattle, recently discovered that our landlord, who is Chinese, has copied our entire business plan right down to copying our literature and floor plan and name for his business in China. Not so friendly, don’t you think? I call it stealing.

Comment from Secilia
Time March 20, 2012 at 7:59 am

Dear Major ,
I’m a reporter from Chongqing Times , one of the lastest newspapers in CQ. My apartment is focus on the economic part of our city . I heard of your visit one month ago from a businessman who is from Seattle and I have been looking forward to it ever since . I really wish we can meet up and have a short interview . All I’m trying to do is to have a chance to know YOU on behalf of Chongqing’s press and Chongqing people . As far as I’m concerned , Chongqing people can have a better understanding about our sister city’s culture only if we have a chance of face to face communication . In that case , infos and image about Seattle will be more real and approachable since it’s from a common Chongqing girl from a local newspapar instead of governmental note with simple words . I already emailed your employees and I pray you will read this and touched by my sincere .

Comment from Chelsea
Time March 21, 2012 at 11:54 am

Besides sending Seattle’s children to study in China, our mayor should also attract more Chinese students to study in Seattle in order to help the growth of US college education.