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Whitby - Yixing Friendship Agreement

In 2014, Council approved the Town of Whitby establishing a friendship arrangement with the City of Yixing, Jiangsu Province, People's Republic of China. The purpose of this arrangement is to promote cooperation, economic and trade interflow and exchanges between the two municipalities.

On August 1, 2014, the Town of Whitby and the City of Yixing signed a friendship agreement at a reception and ceremony at the Port Whitby Marina.

Photos of the friendship delegation's tour of Whitby, reception and Friendship Agreement signing ceremony are available here.

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Rationale for a Friendship Agreement Memorandum of Understanding

  • Yixing is located in Jiangsu Province, China. Ontario has had a twinning relationship with Jiangsu since 1985 and has an Ontario trade office located there.
  • The Province also has several international trade staff located in Shanghai who are responsible for outreach in the Yixing area and are actively engaged in building investment and trade relationships with Ontario.
  • Durham Region visited Wuxi in Jiangsu Province during their 2013 mission to China and has retained the services of a business development consultant to act on the Region's behalf. The Wuxi government has committed to visit Durham in 2014 at which time a friendship agreement would be signed.
  • Yixing is a smaller city in Jiangsu Province but aligns well with the relationships and work being undertaken by the Province of Ontario and Durham Region.
  • Yixing and Whitby share a number of similarities including geographic features, industrial base and educational institutions. Both communities are within the economic circle of major cities. Both are waterfront communities with extensive land dedicated to parks, and recreational facilities. The industrial base of both communities includes companies in advanced manufacturing, auto parts, energy and environmental and service industries.
  • There is a natural alignment across the three levels of government (Province, Region and City).