Newsom Goes To China; Not For Vacation

Mayors kick off new business/devlopment initiative

San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom is taking in the sights in Shanghai, China, but he is not on vacation.

Newsom is spending the week in Shanghai to kick off a new China-San Francisco economic development initiative called ChinaSF.

On Tuesday Newsom met with Shanghai mayor Han Zheng to discuss the initiative, and to thank him for ongoing support of the sister city relationship the two cities have.

ChinaSF is a public-private partnership that is touted to help connect businesses in China and the Bay Area and assist Chinese companies looking to locate or invest in North America.

"San Francisco is proud of its long-standing relationship with China and its sister city, Shanghai," said Newsom.  "ChinaSF builds on this history of shared cultural and economic ties, and strengthens future economic prosperity through enhanced relationships between San Franciscan and Chinese businesses."

Newsom's office reported that ChinaSF would be used in part to help business recruitment for both sides.

"We look forward to furthering the spirit of cooperation between our two cities with more public/private partnerships, like ChinaSF, as well as additional cultural, intellectual and economic endeavors," Newsom said.

After his meeting with Han, Newsom traveled to Shanghai Museum where he signed an agreement between the Shanghai Museum and the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco.

The museums plan to develop an exhibition about artistic development in the city of Shanghai from 1850 to the present. 

The exhibition will be presented at the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco from Feb. 12 to May 9, 2010.

Newsom's office also reported that officials with the Shanghai Expo plan to hold a "San Francisco Week" in 2010 when the event is held.

Newsom visited the headquarters of the expo, where he received a briefing about the event and a tour of the facility.

The Shanghai Expo is the first world exposition on the theme of city, sustainability and the challenges that face the urban population.

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