Foster signs formal agreement with Liaoning

Date published: 07 December 2016

First Minister, the Rt. Hon. Arlene Foster today signed a formal agreement with Liaoning in Shenyang.

First Minister Arlene Foster is pictured during a meeting at Shenyang, Liaoning in China with Vice Governor Bing Zhigang
First Minister Arlene Foster is pictured during a meeting at Shenyang, Liaoning in China with Vice Governor Bing Zhigang

When the First Minister and deputy First Minister met Madam Liu Yandong in Beijing in 2013 she recommended they consider a formal agreement with Liaoning, the largest and richest province in China’s north east with a population of 44 million people.

This region was the industrial powerhouse for China with a long history in manufacturing, ship building and mining. Liaoning is going through a process to re-balance its economy and has many similarities to Northern Ireland in this regard.

First Minister, Arlene Foster said: “I welcome the signing of this formal agreement with Liaoning.

“This agreement is another milestone in our relationship with China and shows the practical commitment of the Chinese Government to work with Northern Ireland.

“Given the size of Northern Ireland in comparison to China, our strategy for maximising mutual benefits is to target specific areas where we can add value and develop programmes that will deliver real benefits.

“This strategic approach of targeting regions is also shared by the Chinese Government who have encouraged their provincial governments to establish contacts at a regional level.

“This way we will be better placed to share experience on areas of mutual interest and develop economic and education programmes, managed at a regional level, supporting business growth, access to markets, generate investment and increase trade.”

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