Mayor Marvin Rees recently flew to China to attend one of the world’s leading business events, the Fortune 500 Forum, which this year takes place in Bristol’s twin city of Guangzhou.
Attending at the invitation of the mayor of Guangzhou, Wen Guo Hui, Marvin Rees showcased Bristol’s various investment opportunities and strengthened commercial, educational and cultural ties with Bristol’s sister city in China.
The mayor joined leaders and CEOs of the US and China’s largest companies and key government departments at the international event where he was asked to contribute to a discussion alongside other global mayors on the subject of innovation, including how cities are tackling urbanisation and economic growth through the use of technology and private sector collaboration. Bristol recently beat London to the top spot in the UK Smart Cities Index, compiled by Navigant Consulting on behalf of Huawei UK.
Bristol’s mayor also met with Guangzhou’s mayor, representatives from the British Consulate and Department for International Trade, as well as potential investors to discuss key development opportunities in Bristol.
Projects under discussion included Temple Quarter Enterprise Zone and the Western Harbour site, as well as aspirations for a Bristol underground system. Also on the agenda was key growth areas in innovation, energy and housing construction.
In order to maximise the time and travel, the Mayor made a stopover in Kuala Lumpar to meet the British High Commission, Mayor of Kuala Lumpur, Tan Sri Amin Nordin, and the company YTL.
YTL are already major investors in the Bristol region. As owners of Wessex Water and the Gainsborough Bath Spa hotel they recently acquired the disused Filton airfield for a major mixed use development that includes over 2,600 new homes, three schools, and high tech commercial units. Alongside this development, YTL has also acquired the Brabazon Hangars in Filton, which has been put forward as a potential site for the arena.*
On arrival in Malaysia, the mayor visited mixed use, education and housing developments and received a tour and briefing on the city’s metro and rail systems.
Mayor Marvin Rees said: “I was delighted to have the chance to show business leaders from China, the US and around the world the exciting prospects on offer here in Bristol.
“Whether it’s Bristol’s hugely successful and expanding Temple Quarter or the new development opportunities on the Western Harbour site – we have a huge amount to offer here in Bristol. Attracting much needed investment will bring us one step closer to transforming areas of the city for the benefit of everyone, both businesses and citizens.”