Contact: Shawn Uhlman, PDC, 503-823-7994

June 06, 2014

Patrick Quinton, executive director of the Portland Development Commission, will travel to China June 6 through June 15 to sign Portland’s first trade city partnership in Asia, with the city of Changsha, capital of Hunan Province.

Trade city partnerships are non-binding, bilateral trade agreements at a mayor-to-mayor level, with an emphasis on business development. The Portland-Changsha partnership will concentrate on sustainability, foreign direct investment, governance and education.

Quinton said, “ We’ve learned through our work with the Brookings Institution that cities are playing much more prominent roles in the development of international trade and relationship-building between compatible regions globally. This new partnership is essential to help our local firms – in all industries – gain a foothold in China, a market that holds enormous interest and that has been challenging for entry.”

Changsha’s interest in sustainable urbanization and trade with Portland industries is the foundation of the new partnership. The city is home to 3.6 million people.

Quinton has also been invited to present at a government-sponsored conference on low carbon urbanization, taking place in Shenzhen, where he’ll discuss Portland’s successful climate action plan and the city’s success in lowering greenhouse gas emissions while also growing the local economy.

While in Shenzhen, Quinton, along with PDC international development officer Michael Gurton, will meet with representatives of the Portland – Kunming EcoPartnership to plan an exhibition that showcases the green expertise of Portland firms. They’ll also meet with officials from Kunshan, a city in Suzhou, about a planned light rail project; and plan to market Portland real estate projects to Chinese investors interested in Portland opportunities.