Sandwell Mayor, Councillor Julie Webb with left to right Jinhua Municipal People’s Government Mayor, Ji Junmin; Managing Director of A&M EDM, Mark Wingfield and Sandwell Council Leader, Councillor Steve Eling with delegation members.
For the second year running, Sandwell Council has welcomed a delegation of Chinese officials, in order to forge international friendship and business links.
The party from the city of Jinhua in the Zhejiang province located in eastern China visited the premises of precision engineering specialists A&M EDM in Middlemore Road, Smethwick.
During a morning of introductions, presentations and a factory tour, a friendship agreement was signed by Jinhua Municipal People’s Government Mayor, Ji Junmin and the Leader of Sandwell Council, Councillor Steve Eling.
The purpose of the agreement is to promote friendly exchanges between the two areas, and greater cooperation in the fields of economy, trade, science and technology, culture, education, sports, health and personnel, to promote common prosperity and development.
Mark Wingfield, Managing Director of precision engineering company A&M EDM, which has the UK’s largest commercial wire and spark erosion capacity for the aerospace, automotive, Formula 1 and general automation sectors, said: “We are proud to be based in Smethwick with its global manufacturing heritage.
“A & M’s growth demonstrates that manufacturing is thriving here and is essential to our local and national economy.
“It’s was a privilege to welcome the delegation from China, and show our valued guests what we do here.”
Sandwell Council Leader, Councillor Steve Eling, said: “Sandwell’s long-established manufacturing heritage is upheld today thanks to a world-class supply chain and a skilled workforce.
“Across the borough, we have businesses producing products and services for clients that span the globe.
“We’re committed to showcasing this immense talent and expertise, and delighted that our friends from Jinhua in China are visiting.
“Their interest in Sandwell underlines our growing reputation across the world as a place in which to invest.”
The visit, was attended by Chinese officials including the Director General of Jinhua’s Economic and Information Technology Commission, Wang Zhiqiang and represents continued interest in the West Midlands from China, the world’s largest economy.
Sandwell Council welcomed a delegation of Chinese business and state officials from the city of Pengzhou to Sandwell last year.