A GROUP of officials from one of China’s most wealthy cities, Karamay, visited Tewkesbury Borough Council offices to meet local businesses with an interest in establishing commercial links in China.

The Chinese delegation was led by Zhang Hongyan, the Karamay City Mayor, and included business representatives and officials. The event, on Friday April 22, was organised by Tewkesbury Borough Council’s economic development team, and hosted by the mayor, Councillor Ron Allen.

The Chinese visitors met representatives of six advanced engineering businesses in the borough, as well as council officials, councillors and the MP for Tewkesbury, Laurence Robertson, to talk about their respective enterprises and explore the potential for expanding business links and exports.

On behalf of all the Chinese delegates, Mayor Zhang expressed her gratitude to Tewkesbury Borough Council, all the political leaders and local businesses. She said: "This first successful meeting was the start of a great future between Karamay city and Tewkesbury borough. We hope the meeting could be the foundation for any future partnership for both Chinese and UK businesses who have attended the meeting. We are keen, as are Tewkesbury Borough Council, to work together and encourage businesses across the border to find possibilities for growth and mutual benefit.”Lead member for economic development, Councillor Rob Bird, said: “This council has a key objective to support local businesses and economic prosperity for our area. This very successful event illustrates how our team works effectively to help our diverse business community. I hope this will create lasting connections with Karamay to benefit all those involved, and stimulate export opportunities.”

The visit was made possible by Join in China, a Gloucestershire-based business specialising in creating opportunities for UK companies looking for growth by entering the Chinese market.