Prime Minister Bruce Golding is proposing the twinning of the cities of Kingston, Jamaica with China’s city of Tianjin. He has also proposed that both countries collaborate on technical co-operation programmes which could see China providing services to assist in the restoration and re-development of downtown Kingston.
The Prime Minister put forward the proposals to China’s Deputy Secretary of the Communist Party of China Tianjin Committee, Mr. He Lifeng, and his members when he met with them on the final day of his official visit to China on Friday (Feb 5).
Mr. Golding said such an initiative would allow China to make available to Jamaica, some of its expertise which has been demonstrated in developing its own City of Tianjin. The Prime Minister said he was impressed with how the Tianjin municipal authority is established and how it works. He said the visit to Tianjin was particularly useful as he was able to see the amazing work they have done in planning the re-development and the renewal of the city of Tianjin.
“Our capital city Kingston has suffered from the type of urban decay that has affected many cities throughout the world, with businesses and people moving away from the city and creating a new city elsewhere. The city of Kingston is blessed with so many natural attributes. We have one of the finest harbours in the world and it would be a shame to allow the city to die because of neglect. It presents tremendous potential for exciting new developments and we (the government) are committed to a comprehensive integrated program of redevelopment and renewal in the City of Kingston.” PM Golding said.
Prime Minister Bruce Golding (2nd l) views the development plans for the city of Tianjin. The Prime Minister has proposed a twinning of Tianjin with the city of Kingston and for both cities to collaborate on technical co-operation programmes which could see Tianjin, China, providing services to assist in the restoration and redevelopment of downtown Kingston. Also in photo are Permanent Secretary in the OPM, Onika Miller (3rd l); Jamaica’s Ambassador to China, Courteney Rattray (4th l); China’s Ambassador to Jamaica, Chen Jinghua (3rd r) and Special Adviser in the OPM, Christopher Zacca (2nd r).
The Chinese Deputy Secretary, He Lifeng, welcomed the proposal to establish sister relations with the city of Tianjin and Kingston. He expressed the hope that through some specific projects, the Chinese government could further enhance the existing relationship between Kingston and Tianjin. Tianjin based companies have been involved in the development of a number of projects in Jamaica including the construction of the Trelawny stadium and the Montego Bay convention Centre.
PM Golding noted that if the arrangement could be concluded for the twinning of Kingston and Tianjin, he would personally ensure that Usain Bolt whose popularity in China is well documented, be the official guest at the launching ceremony.
PM Golding led a delegation to Beijing, China last week, during which he met with Chinese Government officials and held high level meetings with private and public sector leaders which covered energy, bauxite and major investments.