‘’Since 1999, the City of Ottawa has maintained a special relationship with the City of Beijing, China, which is to this day Ottawa’s only Sister City. I signed this original agreement in 1999 as Mayor of the former City of Ottawa.

I value this relationship and have led a number of economic delegations to China over my years as Mayor. I have deliberately chosen to prioritize and invest in only one Sister City agreement in order to ensure that this relationship receives the attention it deserves and truly serves the interests of both cities, as well as those of our economic development partners who contribute greatly to its success.

That said, I believe this relationship could be strengthened. Just this year, we have seen an increase in activity resulting from this partnership, which has positively impacted our city. We were proud to host a visit of the Beijing Symphony Orchestra to the NAC in February; Long Ma, the dragon-horse from La Machine, was commissioned by a Chinese philanthropist and lent to us for the performance; and in October, Ottawa will host a large Chinese delegation for Beijing Week, which will take place October 4 to 8 at Lansdowne Park as part of Ottawa 2017’s Ottawa Welcomes the World series.

In preparation for this great event in October, and in order to strengthen our relationship with Beijing going forward, I have decided to appoint Mr. Patrick Lin as my Special Advisor on Canada-China relations, a role he will be filling on a volunteer basis.

Mr. Lin was instrumental in bringing the Beijing Symphony Orchestra to Ottawa this winter, and is one of the main organizers of the upcoming Beijing Week at Lansdowne. He is a long-time resident of Ottawa with deep Chinese roots, and his knowledge of the culture, business and political circles will benefit the City of Ottawa and our local businesses wishing to leverage this Sister City partnership. My hope is that Mr. Lin will provide us with the advice required to engage Ottawa in cultural, tourism and business reciprocity with Beijing to the benefit our community and its residents.’’

– Jim Watson, Mayor, City of Ottawa