Manchester China Forum and the Greater Manchester Combined Authority welcomed a delegation of high-profile civic representatives from Tianjin, China this week, to build on the active collaboration between the two cities on the journey to net zero.

Tianjin is a key commercial and deep-water green and smart port city, situated half-an-hour away from Beijing in Northern China. The city is a favoured destination for relocated company HQs and R&D facilities given its nationwide renowned universities. Like Manchester, Tianjin is also a traditional manufacturing powerhouse and has increasingly focused on advanced manufacturing over the years.

Following on from the senior level visit to Tianjin in 2018, both city-regions have agreed a set of ambitions that will serve to deepen policy, trade and investment as well as educational links - particularly focused on tackling the climate crisis and our respective journeys to net zero. The partnership also strives to enhance people-to-people exchange, cultural and sporting links.

Tianjin Delegation


Leaders from Tianjin Municipal People’s Government, Tianjin Commission of Commerce, Tianjin Binhai High-Tech Industrial Development Zone (THT), Tianjin Economic-Technological Development Area (TEDA), and British Embassy Beijing were in attendance for the day visit.

During the visit, the Executive Vice Mayor’s delegation met with Greater Manchester’s Mayor, Andy Burnham for an exchange of civic updates. Both mayors also witnessed the signing of the Greater Manchester and Tianjin Three-Year Workplan – signed by the Director General of the Tianjin Foreign Affairs Office and the Executive Director of the Manchester China Forum - which detailed key areas of collaboration for both city-regions moving forward.

As part of the long-term partnership to accelerate sustainable solutions through innovation, guests met with senior representatives from the University of Manchester and learned more about the city-region’s innovation agenda.

The delegation also visited Salford Energy House 2.0, which has caught national and global media attention for its world-leading facilities that provide an environment for testing new technologies in extreme climatic conditions.

Strengthening cultural ties through sport and hospitality also remain a priority and the team on the ground took guests on an exclusive tour of Manchester City Football Club.

Rhys Whalley, Executive Director of Manchester China Forum said:

“Engagement activity such as this is invaluable and gives us the unique opportunity to re-enforce our aims and exchange ideas. We look forward to deepening ties with Tianjin through policy, investment and trade as well as furthering people-to-people links.”

If you are a Chinese business interested in growing in Greater Manchester, contact Manchester China Forum Project Manager Yunyang Xia -