407 West State Street, Trenton, NJ 08618  (609)695-3481
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Finding Friends and Business Partners

Sister Cities Promote
Economic Development

Amanda M. Straub
By Amanda M. Straub
Communications Coordinator
Sister Cities International

See Caption Below
Sister Cities' participants from throughout the country and around the world met at this year's 50th Anniversary Conference in Washington, D.C.

During these tumultuous times when understanding between nations seems rare, the New Brunswick Sister Cities Association has taken steps to form a foundation of trust with other cultures – all while furthering economic development in New Brunswick.

New Jersey is unique because it does not have the large and wealthy metropolitan cities that many other states have. But that has not stopped them from moving forward. The programs implemented by the New Brunswick Sister Cities Association have led the way for more business opportunities and given citizens the chance to learn new ways of doing things from others.

“Sister city relationships provide a good framework for international relations for the state,” said Celeste Armenti-McElroy, Vice President for International Trade and Protocol at the New Jersey Commerce, Economic Growth & Tourism Commission. “These partnerships are also important in bringing people together to build and strengthen relationships and to exchange ideas.”

See Caption Below
Large forums like the Sister Cities International Annual Conference (the next conference will be held July 18-21, 2007 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida) or smaller regional conferences or meetings are great resources for developing and sharing ideas to get your economic development program started.

The New Brunswick Sister Cities Association was invited to join a partnership with Union County and the New Jersey Department of Commerce, who with business representatives from various parts of China, sponsored a five-day trade fair in New Brunswick in 2000.

The fair’s formal ceremonies were opened by New Brunswick Mayor James M. Cahill and representatives from the Consulate General of the People’s Republic of China in New York City. The five-day program included a symposium, a trade fair with networking opportunities for United States businesspeople, a product exhibition and a business partnership matching opportunity.

With nearly 200 Chinese businesspeople gathered in New Brunswick to talk about economic development and trade relationships, the city proved to be very hospitable. The trade fair filled almost the entire Hyatt Regency Hotel, with approximately 200 rooms reserved at an average of $160 per room per night. Daily arrangements were also made for banquet-style lunch and dinner for the businesspeople during their stay.

Between the hotel accommodations, meals, and tourist shopping, it is estimated that over $200,000 was spent in New Brunswick during the Chinese Trade Fair. Organizers point out that any kind of economic development program takes time to mature and that it is not an overnight process.

“It’s common for communities to invest time, energy and creativity into forging economic development ties with a sister city,” noted Tim Honey, executive director of Sister Cities International. “And often people forget that there is much more to economic development than trade dollars. There’s also professional development, micro-entrepreneurialism, training and other mechanisms to foster economic ties with a sister city.”

See caption below
Nearly 200 Chinese businesspeople gathered in New Brunswick to talk about economic development and trade relationships.

 

New Brunswick also has much in common with its Hungarian sister city, Debrecen. Both communities are home to pharmaceutical companies, universities, museums and hospitals. During the 1990s, New Brunswick Sister Cities hosted “TRADE 2000 – Developing Hungarian Business Partnerships.” As interest in the project blossomed, the program grew from a one-day workshop to a three-day conference. Co-sponsors included the Hungarian-American Chamber of Commerce of New York and New Jersey, the United States Department of Commerce, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, and the New Jersey Department of Commerce.

Conference events included a symposium, business partnership matching program, workshops on marketing and finances and eventually trade missions to Debrecen. New Brunswick-based pharmaceutical company, Johnson & Johnson, presented Debrecen hospitals with medical supplies, which later led to other business agreements with Hungarian pharmaceutical company, Bio-gal.
Over several years, Johnson & Johnson sponsored pediatric cardiologists from Hungary to come to New Brunswick for training at St. Peter’s Medical Center. In exchange, American doctors traveled to Debrecen to attend conferences to learn about new surgical techniques and supplies. Because of these exchanges, Johnson & Johnson was able to sell medical supplies to hospitals in Hungary.

“While money may be important – it’s the imagination, energy and the hard work of interested volunteer citizens, city and business leaders that matters the most in developing and maintaining a successful sister cities relationship,” said Jane Tublin, Director of International Programs for the City of New Brunswick and Sister Cities International New Jersey State Coordinator.

“It is important for smaller cities to realize that through a successful sister cities relationship, economic development can become a major program. A sister cities program can be the major milestone in building the foundation and trust necessary for making economic development with their international community a priority,” said Tublin.

New Brunswick’s sister cities are Debrecen, Hungary; Limerick (County of), Ireland; Fukui City, Japan; and Tsuruoka, Japan. For more information regarding New Brunswick or New Jersey Sister Cities, contact State Coordinator Jane L. Tublin at tublinjane@yahoo.com or 732-745-5174.


407 West State Street, Trenton, NJ 08618  (609)695-3481
 NJLM logo 

William G. Dressel Jr, Executive Director - Michael J. Darcey, CAE, Asst Executive Director
Change Font Size
Larger
| Smaller

 

Finding Friends and Business Partners

Sister Cities Promote
Economic Development

Amanda M. Straub
By Amanda M. Straub
Communications Coordinator
Sister Cities International

See Caption Below
Sister Cities' participants from throughout the country and around the world met at this year's 50th Anniversary Conference in Washington, D.C.

During these tumultuous times when understanding between nations seems rare, the New Brunswick Sister Cities Association has taken steps to form a foundation of trust with other cultures – all while furthering economic development in New Brunswick.

New Jersey is unique because it does not have the large and wealthy metropolitan cities that many other states have. But that has not stopped them from moving forward. The programs implemented by the New Brunswick Sister Cities Association have led the way for more business opportunities and given citizens the chance to learn new ways of doing things from others.

“Sister city relationships provide a good framework for international relations for the state,” said Celeste Armenti-McElroy, Vice President for International Trade and Protocol at the New Jersey Commerce, Economic Growth & Tourism Commission. “These partnerships are also important in bringing people together to build and strengthen relationships and to exchange ideas.”

See Caption Below
Large forums like the Sister Cities International Annual Conference (the next conference will be held July 18-21, 2007 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida) or smaller regional conferences or meetings are great resources for developing and sharing ideas to get your economic development program started.

The New Brunswick Sister Cities Association was invited to join a partnership with Union County and the New Jersey Department of Commerce, who with business representatives from various parts of China, sponsored a five-day trade fair in New Brunswick in 2000.

The fair’s formal ceremonies were opened by New Brunswick Mayor James M. Cahill and representatives from the Consulate General of the People’s Republic of China in New York City. The five-day program included a symposium, a trade fair with networking opportunities for United States businesspeople, a product exhibition and a business partnership matching opportunity.

With nearly 200 Chinese businesspeople gathered in New Brunswick to talk about economic development and trade relationships, the city proved to be very hospitable. The trade fair filled almost the entire Hyatt Regency Hotel, with approximately 200 rooms reserved at an average of $160 per room per night. Daily arrangements were also made for banquet-style lunch and dinner for the businesspeople during their stay.

Between the hotel accommodations, meals, and tourist shopping, it is estimated that over $200,000 was spent in New Brunswick during the Chinese Trade Fair. Organizers point out that any kind of economic development program takes time to mature and that it is not an overnight process.

“It’s common for communities to invest time, energy and creativity into forging economic development ties with a sister city,” noted Tim Honey, executive director of Sister Cities International. “And often people forget that there is much more to economic development than trade dollars. There’s also professional development, micro-entrepreneurialism, training and other mechanisms to foster economic ties with a sister city.”

See caption below
Nearly 200 Chinese businesspeople gathered in New Brunswick to talk about economic development and trade relationships.

 

New Brunswick also has much in common with its Hungarian sister city, Debrecen. Both communities are home to pharmaceutical companies, universities, museums and hospitals. During the 1990s, New Brunswick Sister Cities hosted “TRADE 2000 – Developing Hungarian Business Partnerships.” As interest in the project blossomed, the program grew from a one-day workshop to a three-day conference. Co-sponsors included the Hungarian-American Chamber of Commerce of New York and New Jersey, the United States Department of Commerce, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, and the New Jersey Department of Commerce.

Conference events included a symposium, business partnership matching program, workshops on marketing and finances and eventually trade missions to Debrecen. New Brunswick-based pharmaceutical company, Johnson & Johnson, presented Debrecen hospitals with medical supplies, which later led to other business agreements with Hungarian pharmaceutical company, Bio-gal.
Over several years, Johnson & Johnson sponsored pediatric cardiologists from Hungary to come to New Brunswick for training at St. Peter’s Medical Center. In exchange, American doctors traveled to Debrecen to attend conferences to learn about new surgical techniques and supplies. Because of these exchanges, Johnson & Johnson was able to sell medical supplies to hospitals in Hungary.

“While money may be important – it’s the imagination, energy and the hard work of interested volunteer citizens, city and business leaders that matters the most in developing and maintaining a successful sister cities relationship,” said Jane Tublin, Director of International Programs for the City of New Brunswick and Sister Cities International New Jersey State Coordinator.

“It is important for smaller cities to realize that through a successful sister cities relationship, economic development can become a major program. A sister cities program can be the major milestone in building the foundation and trust necessary for making economic development with their international community a priority,” said Tublin.

New Brunswick’s sister cities are Debrecen, Hungary; Limerick (County of), Ireland; Fukui City, Japan; and Tsuruoka, Japan. For more information regarding New Brunswick or New Jersey Sister Cities, contact State Coordinator Jane L. Tublin at tublinjane@yahoo.com or 732-745-5174.

For more information on economic development programs through sister city partnerships, visit the Sister Cities International website at www.sister-cities.org, or contact Matthew Corso, Director for the Network for Sustainable Development at mcorso@sister-cities.org or 202-347-8630 ext. 8636.

 

 

Article published in December 2006, New Jersey Municipalities

 

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