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Mayor Ko and Mayor Ricardo Qinonez Lemus of Guatemala City Signed a Memorandum of Understanding to Enhance Technology Exchanges between Taipei and Guatemala City

Mayor Ko and Mayor Ricardo Qinonez Lemus of Guatemala City Signed a MOU to Enhance Technology Exchanges

On May 12, Mayor Ko led Commissioner Chou Tai-Chu of the Mayor’s Office for External Affairs, Commissioner Lu Hsin-Ke of the Department of Information Technology, and Director Lee Chen-Yu of the Taipei Smart City Project Management Office to sign a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Mayor Ricardo Quinonez Lemus of Guatemala City, a sister city of Taipei, through video conferencing. The MOU aims to strengthen the two cities’ exchanges of smart city technologies. Our Ambassador to Guatemala, Cheng Li-Cheng, also participated in this video conference. 

Ambassador Cheng stated that the International Institute for Management Development, Lausanne, Switzerland ranked Taipei fourth in the 2021 Global Smart City Index. Guatemala City has achieved outstanding performance in economic, societal, and environmental fields. Guatemala City intends to strengthen exchanges and collaboration with Taipei in various aspects, especially smart city technologies, through signing the MOU.

Mayor Ko appreciated Mayor Lemus’s support for the 2022 Mayors’ Summit Online held in Taipei. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Mayor Lemus could not attend the summit in Taipei as scheduled. However, with ambassador Cheng’s assistance, the summit was held through videoconferencing, during which the mayors of both capital cities signed the MOU.

Mayor Ko stated that the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world. However, with crisis comes opportunity. Taipei has accelerated its digitalization transformation of industries. For example, the establishment of the Taipei Urban Intelligence Center, online teaching, remote work, and large-scale events that integrate videoconferencing and real-world meetings have not only increased Taipei’s international competitiveness but also contributed to the city’s economic development. 

Mayor Lemus stated that Guatemala City is undergoing a process of promoting smart city technologies. He hoped that through the power of technology, citizens’ quality of life can be improved efficiently. Currently, Guatemala City is promoting traffic-related projects including smart traffic signals, smart parking meters, and electric buses. Therefore, Guatemala City is highly interested in Taipei’s smart traffic policies, and wishes to learn from Taipei’s implementation of 5G smart poles and environmental weather monitoring. Mayor Lemus expressed his desire to learn from Taipei in the future.

After the aforementioned exchange, Director Lee and Sr. Ludwig Rodriguez, the Director of the Bureau of Modern Development of Guatemala City, represented their respective cities to brief attendees on progress in smart city development, and they had lively interactions. Both parties also designated contacts to facilitate further discussion of cooperation in the future.