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Sister cities aim for common benefits

posted on 16/05/2004: 3076 views

The Sister Cities Forum, a gathering of mayors and top executives from cities that have twinning protocols and a cooperation agreement with Dubai, was opened yesterday. Sheikh Hamdan said the forum reflected the strength of relations between the cities, adding that Dubai had become a hub of various cultures and economic prosperity, thanks to the wise leadership of President His Highness Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, His Highness Sheikh Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. He expressed the hope the forum would bring benefits to all participating cities. "We aim to achieve common benefits in the fields of trade, economy, education, the media, technology and tourism," Sheikh Hamdan said.

A documentary on modern Dubai was screened at the event at Al Multaqa Hall, at the Dubai International Convention Centre. The ceremony was attended by Saeed Al Ghandi, Speaker of the Federal National Council (FNC), ministers, and top local and federal government officials.

Sheikh Hamdan opened an exhibition being held on the sidelines of the event, showcasing the achievements of Dubai Municipality and projects of the event's sponsors. The first session of the forum was opened by Qasim Sultan, Director-General of Dubai Municipality. He suggested in an opening speech that a website be launched for sister cities, administered by Dubai Municipality, which would bring together all the experiences of sister cities and promote their cooperation.

He said the forum would add to the meaning of twinning and friendship and increase the level of interaction among sister cities. More than 600 delegates from the participating cities took part in the event.

During the first session, best practices by the cities of Detroit (USA), Geneva (Switzerland) and Damascus (Syria) were reviewed. Folkloric shows by groups from participating cities were presented on the first day. The cities include Istanbul (Turkey), Osaka (Japan), Beirut (Lebanon), Guangzhou and Shanghai (China), Geneva (Switzerland), Gold Coast (Australia), Casablanca (Morocco), Damascus (Syria), Detroit (USA) and Dundee (Scotland). The public can enjoy free folk shows from the different cities on May 17 at hall number 8C at the World Trade Centre. (The Gulf News)


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