Taipei mayor leaves for Shanghai for twin-city forum

2017/07/01 17:14:21 fontsize-small fontsize-default fontsize-big
Taipei mayor leaves for Shanghai for twin-city forum

Taipei, July 1 (CNA) Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) left for Shanghai Saturday to attend an annual forum between the two cities.

Before his departure from Taipei's Songshan Airport, he was asked if there will be a meeting between him and Zhang Zhijun (張志軍), who heads the Taiwan Affairs Office under China's State Council.

"I really don't know (if there will be a meeting with the China's top official on Taiwan)," he said.

He said that Taipei has not interfered with the participating guests on the Shanghai side, and that he will respect their arrangements.

Ko reaffirmed that the theme of the forum is clear -- an exchange between the two cities -- at a time of cool cross-Taiwan Strait relations, It will help assuage the stalemate through civic groups, business and even student exchanges, according to Ko.

He said the city will send a street dance group to perform in Shanghai and will avoid discussion of political issues as much as possible.

Ko said he will "heed the principles of reciprocity and dignity."

According to the Taipei City government, Ko will lead a delegation of 58 city government officials and 10 Taipei City councilors at the forum.

The theme of the forum will be "healthy city," and the two cities will exchange views on subjects such as health, the environment, smart cities, welfare services and youth entrepreneurship, according to the city government.

Chen Liang-kung (陳亮恭), director of the Taipei Veterans General Hospital's Geriatrics and Gerontology Center, is part of Ko's delegation.

After attending the forum on Sunday, the delegation will visit the Shanghai 6th People's Hospital, where it will conduct exchanges with doctors and medical students over a luncheon and observe an orthopedic surgery procedure.

Later that day, it will visit a residential area in Shanghai's Xuhui District and the Shanghai Urban Planning Exhibition Center.

On July 3, it will visit the Yangtze River tunnel and bridge control center, a residential community and a wetland area at Chongming District, as well as a Chinese paddlefish natural reserve at the mouth of Yangtze River before returning to Taipei that evening.

(By You Kai-hsiang and Lilian Wu)

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