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April 1, 2016

Mayor Tory to lead business mission to Asia to bring more jobs and investment to Toronto
  
Mayor John Tory will lead a Toronto business mission to China and Japan from April 7 to 16 to bring more jobs and investment to the city. China and Japan are two of Toronto’s top trading partners, with trade between Canada and those countries exceeding $109 billion in 2015.

“We are heading to China and Japan to sell Toronto and the benefits of investing and working here so we can build opportunities for our businesses to expand and create jobs,” said Mayor Tory. “China and Japan are two of our largest trading partners and we cannot wait for business to come to us while our competitors make inroads. We must sell the benefits of doing business in this city.”

The Mayor will be leading a delegation of senior business leaders. The focus of the business mission will be to sell Toronto’s strengths as Canada’s financial and business capital, a hub of higher education and research, and encourage investment in areas such as clean technology and infrastructure.

China locations will include Shanghai, Hong Kong and Chongqing, where the delegation will honour the 30th anniversary of Toronto's Partner City relationship with that city.

Japan locations will include Tokyo and Sagamihara, where the delegation will honour the 25th anniversary of Toronto's Friendship City agreement with that city.

The Mayor will be joined by Councillor Michael Thompson (Ward 37 Scarborough Centre), Chair of the Economic Development Committee, Councillor Shelley Carroll (Ward 33, Don Valley East) and Councillor Mary-Margaret McMahon (Ward 32 Beaches-East York). Councillor Chin Lee (Ward 41 Scarborough-Rouge River) will be part of the China mission.

Accompanying the City representatives will be a 26-member delegation consisting of Janet De Silva, President and CEO of the Toronto Region Board of Trade; Janet Ecker, President and CEO of the Toronto Financial Services Alliance and Toronto business leaders.

“To make Toronto one of the most competitive and sought after business regions in the world requires us to showcase the tremendous investment opportunities Toronto offers and help our region’s businesses access global growth markets,” said De Silva. “The Mayor’s mission provides a catalyst for both. Having spent 15 years in Hong Kong and China, I know that opportunities for growth abound for Canadian businesses, which are highly respected throughout the region. This mission will allow our political and business leaders to build lasting relationships that will help our City and businesses prosper over the long term.”

"As a top 10 international financial centre and now North America's trading hub for the Chinese currency, the Renminbi, Toronto values its strong business ties with China,” said Ecker. “Many of our growing global financial companies led the way in building those ties and they recognize how important it is to continue to cultivate such relationships. The Mayor's visit is designed to do that by underlining the importance we put on our trading partnership with China and by supporting efforts by our financial companies to expand these business opportunities. We are pleased to participate and look forward to a successful mission.”

“Municipalities play a significant role in the Canada-China relationship. Visits by mayors to China facilitate practical connections for their constituent companies and serve as excellent investment attraction initiatives,” said Sarah Kutulakos, Executive Director and COO of the Canada China Business Council. “Because Chinese municipalities have decision making power over many areas, the fostering of strong city-to-city relationships can open important doors for Canadian companies, particularly in areas like environmental technologies, where China’s needs are great and Canada’s capabilities strong. While many companies have a strategy for particular countries, many Chinese cities are larger than those countries. Such cities are viable markets in themselves, and a visit such as Mayor Tory’s helps enable Toronto companies to do business in such a market.”

More information about the business mission is available at: http://www.toronto.ca/asiamission.

For a copy of the itinerary for the business mission, please contact the Office of the Mayor.

Toronto is Canada's largest city, the fourth largest in North America, and home to a diverse population of about 2.8 million people. It is a global centre for business, finance, arts and culture and is consistently ranked one of the world's most livable cities. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can visit http://www.toronto.ca, call 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, or follow us @TorontoComms.

Media Contact
Shane Gerard
Strategic Communications
416-397-5711
sgerard@toronto.ca

Keerthana Kamalavasan
Office of the Mayor
647-460-7507
Keerthana.Kamalavasan@toronto.ca
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