BC Premier Visits Guangdong, Speaks of 'Strengthening Relationship'

By Gary Bailer, February 5, 2018

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British Columbia Premier John Horgan recently concluded his inaugural trip to Asia, which included a stop in Guangzhou.

On January 22, Premier Horgan attended an intimate gathering at the White Swan Hotel, where he spoke about strengthening the relationship between BC and Guangdong province – ‘sister provinces’ since 1995. He also expressed a desire to expand tourism, technology and clean energy cooperation between the two regions.

“China is B.C.’s second-largest trading partner and an important part of building a strong, sustainable economy that works for people in BC,” Premier Horgan stated at the event. “To open new opportunities for BC businesses and create good jobs in forestry, clean tech, energy, technology, education and tourism, we need to cultivate strong relationships here. That’s exactly what we’re doing and why we started this mission in Guangdong, our sister province of 23 years.”

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According to an official BC government news release, a key part of the Guangdong visit was to explore ways that BC and China can collaborate on green solutions as China transitions to a low-carbon economy. During the premier’s Guangzhou stop, a roundtable discussion was held with Guangdong officials and important stakeholders in energy, clean tech, transportation, urban planning and building design.

“China’s transition to low-carbon development and a greener economy represents opportunities for co-operation between BC and Chinese companies to expand this important sector,” said BC’s Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology Bruce Ralston. “By gaining first-hand understanding of Guangdong’s priorities, we have been able to promote BC’s unique services and expertise and open doors for job-creating BC businesses in the clean tech sector.”

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Also during the January 22 event, Tencent International Business Group signed a tourism promotion agreement with Destination BC. The agreement is the first of its kind in Canada and will give BC a preferred marketing platform on Tencent’s WeChat platform, which attracts over 900 million daily active users — making it one of the largest in the world.

“We’re incredibly excited by this agreement. It’s a great way to kick off the Canada-China Year of Tourism and create opportunities that will benefit BC’s tourism operators,” said Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Lisa Beare. “We’re here to foster closer cultural ties between BC and China, and to make sure Chinese visitors have remarkable experiences in the year ahead in communities throughout BC.”

The 2018 Canada-China Year of Tourism was launched by the governments of Canada and China to celebrate and promote tourism opportunities between the two countries.

[Images via the Government of British Columbia]

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