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Taipei and Houston reaffirmed their Sister City Partnership

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Taipei and Houston celebrated the 60th anniversary of their sister city partnership this year. First designated sister cities in 1961, decades of cooperation in economic, educational, and cultural affairs have valuably contributed to the growth of both cities into international metropolises. In commemoration of this city sisterhood, the mayors of the two cities recently signed a partnership agreement pledging to deepen cooperation and accelerate mutual economic revitalization.
The agreement was signed by Taipei Mayor Ko and Houston Mayor Turner on July 30, 2021. The ceremony was witness by Douglas Hsu, Director General of the Department of North American Affairs, Taiwan Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Robert Lo, Director General of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Houston. Also in attendance were numerous esteemed guests including David Lin, former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Taiwan and former Director General of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Houston; Rong-Quan Wu, Taiwan’s former ambassador to Canada and Latvia; Brent Omdahl, Commercial Section Chief of the American Institute in Taiwan; C. W. Chin, Chairman of the American Chamber of Commerce in Taipei; Mei-Yu Syueh, Secretary General of the Taiwan Council for US Affairs; and Shu-Wei Huang, CEO of the Lungshan Temple Foundation. Taipei City officials present included Hsin-Ke Lu, Commissioner of the Department of Information Technology; Chung-Chieh Lin, Commissioner of the Department of Economic Development; Yu-Hsiu Chou, Commissioner of the Department of Social Welfare; Su-Hui Chen, Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Education; and Gordon Yang, Executive Director of the International Affairs Advisory Council.
During Mayor Ko’s opening speech, he drew attention to the Eagle Act recently passed by the United States House of Representatives that marks a milestone in Taiwan–United States friendship and coincides with Taipei and Houston’s 60 years of friendship. He announced that the two cities will continue to work together closely in relation to technological, medical, economic, educational, and cultural development. He also invited Mayor Turner to visit Taipei and attend the 2022 Smart City Mayors’ Summit to strengthen ties with cities worldwide and experience the open-minded and diverse culture of Taipei.
Tom Chou, Commissioner of the Department of Civil Servant Development, Taipei City Government, and Commissioner of the Mayor’s Office for External Affairs, shared the city government’s policies and vision, proposing areas in which the two cities could work together to advance educational programs, technology initiatives, smart city development, and pandemic-response strategies. His proposal was well received. At the end of the ceremony, Houston citizens from Taiwan and the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Houston jointly presented Mayor Turner with a painting of the Grand Hotel Taipei, and Mayor Turner reciprocated the gesture by an extending an invite to Mayor Ko to visit Houston and experience the local culture.