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50th Anniversaries

Last updated date:2024/1/29

50th Anniversaries with 4 Sister Cities

The year 2015 will mark the 50th anniversary of the conclusion of sister-city agreements between Yokohama and 4 cities around the world: Mumbai, India; Manila, the Philippines; Odessa, Ukraine; and Vancouver, Canada. Exchange between citizens is what makes friendly relations possible between different peoples and cultures as they have been actively engaged in deepening the ties since day one. The City of Yokohama wishes to build on what has been achieved in half a century to further deepen exchange in fields such as the economy, welfare, education, tourism, and grow together with its sister-cities.

Mumbai (since June 1965)

Mumbai is a port city representative of the multiple facets of India and the country’s largest economic center. Many architectural structures built under the British rule remain and make up part of the cityscape. The city is also very famous as the capital of Bollywood movies.

Mumbai and Yokohama were the very first sister cities between India and Japan. Citizens have been actively engaged in exchange, via the Yokohama Mumbai Friendship Committee for example, and in deepening the friendly relations between the two cities. Since 2003, a Diwali festival is held every year in Yamashita Park, and in 2009, two facilities geared toward the Indian community opened in Yokohama: the Yokohama India Centre in Naka Ward, which offers support to small and mid-sized companies from Yokohama to expand in India, and the Yokohama campus of the India International School in Japan in Midori Ward. In 2015, coinciding with the 50th anniversary of sister-city relations, the City of Yokohama will establish a representative office in Mumbai.

Manila (since July 1965)

Manila is the capital of the Philippines, a lively city where cultures from all times and places merge. It is the center of the country’s economy and government. Much like Japan’s 20 ordinance-designated cities (at least 500,000 inhabitants), the Philippines counts 35 highly urbanized cities (at least 200,000 inhabitants) of which 16 are concentrated in Metro Manila, the national capital region.

The desire of the two cities to get closer to each other can be traced back to a visit of the mayor of Manila to Yokohama in 1963. Two years later, in 1965, a sister-city agreement is concluded with Manila. The Yokohama Manila Sister City Friendship Committee is involved in a wide range of activities. Every year in May, it participates in the Yokohama Parade, showing off the Philippine colors, and organized an exhibition on the Philippines in 2011 as well as a gathering to support care worker candidates in 2012. Let’s not forget that Yokohama is making joint efforts with JICA toward disaster resiliency in Iroiro and is assisting the elaboration of Cebu’s long-term vision. Together with a recently opened direct flight between Haneda and Manila, the two sister cities and the two countries feel closer than ever.

Odessa (since July 1965)

Famous for its harbor facing the Black Sea, Odessa is Ukraine’s center of commerce, industry and arts. Historically, the city developed as a passage between West and East and as an important base for trade in the region. One of the strongest ties between the two cities lies in the fact that, like Yokohama, Odessa was rebuilt as an international port city after being destroyed by war.

The cooperation between Odessa and Yokohama has touched many fields such as sport, culture, health and medicine. In 2001, Yokohama welcomed four medical doctors who engaged in various exchange activities. In terms of citizen exchange, the Yokohama Odessa Friendship Committee has made much effort in sending and welcoming delegations, cultural exchange and Japanese language education. In the aftermath of the Great East Japan Earthquake of 2011, the citizens of Odessa sent a touching letter accompanied by a kind donation.

Vancouver (since July 1965)

Vancouver is a city that has received the title of “The most livable city” many times. One of the city’s greatest appeals is the balance between urban development and greenery. It has hosted the 2010 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games and aims to be the world’s first “green city” by 2020.

From the end of the 19th and well into the 20th century, there has been Japanese emigration toward Vancouver. People left through the port of Yokohama to cross the Pacific Ocean in search of a different life in Canada. Later, the Hikawa-maru, a passenger ship inaugurated in 1930, started serving the Yokohama-Seattle-Vancouver maritime corridor. The cooperation between Vancouver and Yokohama has touched many fields such as the harbor, education, libraries and creative cities. It is therefore no surprise that, besides Vancouver and Yokohama becoming sister cities in 1965, the Port of Vancouver and the Port of Yokohama signed a sister-port agreement in 1981 and that both cities’ Chinatowns entered into a sisterhood agreement in 1995. There are also exchange programmes between 3 high schools (Minato Sohgoh, Yokohama Science Frontier, Minami) and schools in Vancouver as well as between the Yokohama City Central Library and Vancouver Public Library.

(Cette page en français)

Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai Official Site(外部サイト)

City of Manila Official Site(外部サイト)

City of Odessa Official Site(外部サイト)

City of Vancouver Official Site(外部サイト)

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