Cllr. Cormac Devlin, Cathaoirleach of Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown joined his counterpart Dr. Luo Qiang, Mayor of Chengdu at a special ceremony where a Memorandum of Understanding between the two municipal authorities was signed.
The agreement was adopted during the 2017 Chengdu Global Innovation and Entrepreneurship Fair (GIEF). Over 600 people, including four Nobel prize winners, Chinese and foreign government officials, venture capital and private equity investors and business executives attended related GIEF conferences and forums.
Cllr. Cormac Devlin led a joint Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown, UCD and DLR Chamber Trade Mission where he also participated in a mayoral conference of 38 cities from around the world. The delegation included Professor Andrew Deeks, President of UCD, Mr. Pat Neill, President of DLR Chamber and Ms. Dearbhla Lawson, DLR Director of Economic, Community and Cultural Development. During the visit the delegation met with senior officials from the Provincial Government of Sichuan and also had discussions with the Irish community in Chengdu.
Commenting upon his return, Cllr. Devlin said "as we look towards a post-Brexit economy, cities in Asia offer the prospect of replacement markets and new opportunities, particularly in the high-tech, fin-tech and agri-food sectors. Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan is one such city, with a population 15 million well-educated people and a major transport hub, it is strategically situated in western China presenting a gateway to central Asia."
"I was delighted to be joined by Professor Andrews Deeks, the President of UCD who had discussions with officials from Chengdu and Sichuan about how we can foster further links between the many excellent universities in Chengdu and our world class educational facilities at UCD."
Thanking the City of Chengdu for inviting and hosting Irish the delegation, the Cathaoirleach said “this agreement signals the first step on a road to developing enhanced cooperation between Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown and Chengdu."