A major new development initiative has been announced between Bristol and Chinese city Guangzhou, strengthening the business partnership substantially.
The Terms under a new Memorandum of Understanding, which was signed at the Mansion House in Bristol on Monday, means that Bristol Global Partnership will become the UK’s first representative office of the Sino-Singapore Guangzhou Knowledge City, China’s equivalent of California’s Silicon Valley.
The newly launched Bristol office is set to encourage and support businesses from all over Europe that seek to invest in the strategic gateway at the mouth of the Pearl River.
Director of Bristol Global Partnership, Kam Wong, drew comparisons of the two cities, as the Guangzhou region was regarded as China’s ‘South Gate’ and Bristol is seen as the economic hub and gateway to the South West.
He continued: “Like Bristol, Guangzhou is very much open to business by air, sea, road and rail.”
Mr Wong said that the Guangzhou Knowledge City was interested in attracting big business people looking at opportunities in hospitals, schools, universities, health and hi-tech.
“I think Bristol’s close relationship with Guangzhou over the past 15 years has played a key part allowing us to set up the first Global Partnership office in the World here in the city.”
Dianne Francombe, Chief Executive of the Bristol and West of England China Partnership, added: “This is a fantastic step and shows how much that mutual trust and endeavour has developed.”
One area in particular that Sales and Marketing Director with DPS Process, Nick Palmer, is interested in doing business with is the waste water sector.
He commented: “China is looking to move away from being the factory of the World to being the developer. Bristol technology has a part to play in the process.
“We have been keen concerned with encouraging other businesses to take that path. They are particularly looking for ICT, Biotechnology, new energy and clean technology.”
Mr Palmer concluded: “It takes time for the cultures to change on both sides. We have invested time to visit and listen and the long term effort is starting to reap results.”
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