'sign commitments to consider future alliances'
A week after they've come and gone, we're told that a delegation of Chinese government officials and businessmen visited Racine and met with local government officials.
RCEDC sent out a press release this morning saying "The Racine County community recently hosted a reception honoring Wanming Chi of the China SINB group and five government officials from Sheyang, China."
A call to RCEDC brought back the information that the reception took place Dec. 5.
The press release went on to remind us that the China SINB Group purchased 54 acres in Mount Pleasant in July, and has proposed the development of an Eco-Business Park with 600,000 sq. ft. of office and production space.
Among the local officials sitting down with the Chinese were Carolyn Milkie, president of the Mount Pleasant Village Board; Peter Hansen, president of the Racine County Board; and Racine Mayor John Dickert. All three -- according to the press release -- made the usual stilted welcoming remarks: Milkie: "The Village welcomes the opportunity to work with ...investors that discover the benefits of our location in the Chicago-Milwaukee corridor." Hanson: "Racine County is well positioned and open for business." Dickert: "The cities of Racine and Sheyang have significant similarities, both communities are waterfront cities, home to industries and open to forming new, mutually beneficial alliances."
Sheyang, according to the 'net, is on the Yellow Sea and has a population of 1,047,000 (and is not to be confused with Shenyang, which is four times larger). Pictures of Sheyang are here, on the city's English-language website.
According to RCEDC, both Racine and Mount Pleasant have agreed to consider sister city agreements with Sheyang, "the first step that will lead to cultural and business exchanges that will benefit both communities."
Racine's current sister cities are: Oiso, Japan; Montelimar, France; Aalborg, Denmark; Zapotlanejo, Mexico; Forteleza, Brazil; and Bluefields, Nicaragua. Mount Pleasant has none, but Milkie said the village "would like to foster some idea exchanges and educational exchanges. The more we do, the more likely is further investment in Mount Pleasant." Wanming Chi, she said, "knows some very influential people."