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Suwon, South Korea, could become Phoenix’s 11th sister city

Phoenix could soon have a new sister city. On Wednesday, the city council will be asked to enter into an agreement with a South Korean city.

Suwon, the headquarters for electronics giant Samsung, approached Phoenix about forming a relationship. Sister cities are long-term agreements between two communities in different countries designed to promote cultural and commercial connections.

Phoenix last signed an agreement with Ramat-Gan Israel in 2005. If the council agrees, Suwon will become Phoenix’s 11 th sister city and a delegation led by Mayor Taeyoung Yeom will visit Phoenix to sign the agreement.

Phoenix’s current list of sister cities:

  • Calgary, Canada
  • Catania, Italy
  • Chengdu, China
  • Ennis, Ireland
  • Hermosillo, Mexico
  • Himeji, Japan
  • Grenoble, France
  • Prague, Czech Republic
  • Ramat-Gan, Israel
  • Taipei, Taiwan

Activities are privately funded through the nonprofit Phoenix Sister Cities Inc. The group proposes the following benefits through a relationship with Suwon:

  • Information sharing between municipal staffs concerning Smart Cities initiatives and sustainability (especially recycling and circular economy, water and wastewater).
  • Youth and education exchanges including the Youth Ambassador Exchange Program, the expansion of a pilot program involving pairing classrooms around Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Math (STEAM), Korean culture and language-learning programs, and opportunities for Teach Abroad.
  • Arts, culture and sports exchanges including performances by the Suwon choir, orchestra and taekwondo groups in Phoenix, a demonstration game between Suwon's professional team KT Wiz and the Arizona Diamondbacks.
  • Business exchanges, especially focused on startups and high tech.
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As a senior field correspondent, Christina Estes focuses on stories that impact our economy, your wallet and public policy.