A friendly city relationship is less formal than a sister city relationship and it generally has a lower profile.
Friendly city signing ceremony in Tianjin
A friendly city relationship is likely to be long-term, but the level of community support and involvement is not as high as with a full sister city relationship.
Wellington entered into a partnership with Tianjin as part of the World Bank-supported Megacities Earthquake Mitigation Initiative (EMI). The partnership had a focus on fostering the sharing of scientific, technical and policy expertise in the handling of the common threat of earthquakes.
A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed to formalise the Wellington-Tianjin partnership by the Mayor of Wellington Mark Blumsky and Vice Mayor of Tianjin Liang Su in Wellington on 22 August 2000.
Wellington Mayor Celia Wade-Brown and Tianjin Mayor Huang Xingguo signed a new agreement to set up a friendly city relationship in Tianjin on 22 July 2011. The partnership between Tianjin and Wellington remains strong and the cities are now focusing on creating tangible business and education opportunities from the relationship.
Seoul, Republic of Korea
Wellington’s newest friendly city was formalised during an official Mayoral visit to Asia in July 2016. Mayor Celia Wade-Brown and Mayor Park Won-soon signed a friendly city MoU in Seoul on July 18. Areas of cooperation have been identified in the creative economy and film industries, trade, tourism, cultural exchanges and education.