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Exchange with Various Overseas Cities

Sister Cities
Date of Sister Cities Agreement: October 12, 2006
(In 1996 the former Hamamatsu City signed a “Declaration of Sister Cities in Music and Culture” with Rochester)
Population: Approximately 210,000
How did the Agreement come about?
In 1994, the principal of Eastman School of Music, one of America’s leading music schools, visited Hamamatsu and proposed that the two cities begin cultural exchange through music. In 1996, the two cities signed a “Declaration of Sister Cities in Music and Culture” agreement, beginning a program of musical and cultural exchange between the citizens of the Sister Cities. Following the 2002 Joint Statement by Hamamatsu and Rochester, this has been expanded into a broad program of exchange including visits to Rochester by Hamamatsu City employees and a display of Louisiana Irises by Rochester City in the Hamamatsu Flower Exposition. The exchange between the two cities developed beyond musical and cultural exchange and, as they were virtually sister cities, in 2006, on the tenth anniversary of the Declaration of Sister Cities in Music and Culture, Hamamatsu and Rochester signed a Sister Cities Agreement in order to strengthen their ties and broaden exchange further.

Outline of the City
Rochester is New York State’s third largest city after New York City and Buffalo. Its climate is directly influenced by Lake Ontario, so the winters are harsh with heavy snow. In the time of the pioneers it was known as “Flour City” but has now become “Flower City”, with many tourists from throughout America visiting for the Lilac Festival held in May each year. The city is also home to many companies operating in the fiber optics industry such as Bausch & Lomb.


Date of Sister Cities Agreement: October 22, 1990
(formerly twinned with Inasa town)
Population: Approximately 7,000
How did the Agreement come about?
Hamamatsu received two Sister City invitations between 1987 and 1988 from the City of Chehalis.

In October 1989, a delegation of inspectors visited Chehalis from Inasa. In October 1990, a Sister City Agreement was signed in Chehalis and a program of exchange between the two cities was established. In June 1990, the Inasa International Exchange Association was established to further promote exchange between the Sister Cities.

In July 2005, twelve cities, towns and villages merged to create the new city of Hamamatsu, so as a result, exchange with the Sister City of Chehalis transferred to Hamamatsu.

Outline of the City
Chehalis lies between Seattle, Washington’s main commercial industrial city, and Portland, Oregon, the gateway to the West Coast’s famed blue skies and ocean. The city has made use of its rich environment and has a flourishing agricultural economy under Lewis County’s fiscal policies.

Chehalis is also twinned with neighboring Centralia. The two cities are working together to improve the services they offer to their citizens in fields such as health, education and industry.



Date of Sister Cities Agreement: October 2, 1981
(formerly twinned with Mikkabi)
Population: Approximately 44,500
How did the Agreement come about?
The Mikkabi International Exchange Association was established in January 1981 in order to increase awareness of international society through Sister City exchange. Concurrently, Mikkabi is one of the leading producers of mandarin oranges in Japan, while Porterville is a producer of oranges. From this common point, preparations for a Sister Cities Agreement between the two towns were begun.

In April 1981, the Mayor of Porterville and the Porterville student choir visited Mikkabi. Then in October of the same year, twenty eight officials from Mikkabi, including the mayor, visited Porterville to sign a Sister Cities Agreement.

In July 2005, when the new city of Hamamatsu was formed by a merger of twelve cities, towns and villages, Sister City exchange with Porterville was transferred to Hamamatsu.


Outline of the City
Porterville is surrounded by the San Joaquin Valley, one of the world’s most fertile areas, and is located on the western side of the Sierra Nevada mountain range. It is blessed with a warm climate and four distinct seasons. Its economy is primarily agricultural and, taking advantage of the fertile land, orange and olive groves are cultivated on the plains. A wide variety of nut and fruit trees are grown together with crops such as cotton plants, grapes and vegetables. The city colors are orange and green, and the city flower is the iris.


Date of Sister Cities Agreement: September 29, 1981
(formerly twinned with Hosoe town)
Population: Approximately 15,000
How did the Agreement come about?
It began when an English teacher at the town’s high school proposed to the local assembly that his hometown of Camas be twinned with Hosoe due to the similarities in the natural environment and topography of the two cities. As a result, efforts for international exchange gained momentum and in 1980, the Hosoe International Sister City Committee was established and preparations for signing a Sister City Agreement with Camas were begun.

In 1981, a delegation from Hosoe that was led by the Mayor visited Camas for the first time and signed a Sister City Agreement.

In 2005, when Hamamatsu City was created by the merger of twelve cities, towns and villages, Sister City exchange with Camas was transferred to Hamamatsu.

Outline of the City
Camas is located around the latitude of forty five degrees north, which is almost the same latitude as Wakkanai on the northernmost tip of Hokkaido. However, it has comparatively warm temperatures brought in by the Pacific Ocean and little snowfall in winter. Many of the place names in the area are still the same as those used by the Native Americans. It is a small city blessed with a beautiful natural environment with an abundance of greenery and water.

Camas is thirty minutes by car from the nearby Portland International Airport. In recent years, businesses in the area have been expanding and urbanization of the area has also been proceeding apace. Factories of major Japanese electronic firms are also being established in the area.


Music and Culture Friendship Exchange Cities
Date of Agreement: October 22, 1990
Population: Approximately 1,690,000
Outline of the City
Warsaw is the capital of the Republic of Poland and is a strategic city for Central European politics, economies and transport. It is located in the Mazovia region on the banks of the River Vistula, which runs through the city.

The city is home to a number of industries including manufacturing, steel, electronics and automotive. Poland’s leading higher education institutions, notably Warsaw University, are concentrated in this city of culture which is also home to the National Opera and the Warsaw National Philharmonic Orchestra.

The city is also home to the UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Historic Centre of Warsaw, and a Chopin Museum is also located in the city. The city is the birthplace of Frederick Chopin, the 19th century composer who composed many famous works and is known as the “piano poet”.


Friendship Exchange Cities
Date of Agreement: August 28, 2010
Population: Approximately 8,110,000 (as of November 1, 2010)
How did the Agreement come about?
Hamamatsu is proactively expanding its inbound tourism projects which aim at increasing the number of international visitors to the city. Since 2006, Hamamatsu has been dispatching staff to Shenyang to implement tourism promotional activities in the city. Also, Hamamatsu and Shenyang have been deepening their exchange through Shenyang’s participation in the Hamamatsu Mosaiculture International 2009 and official visits to Hamamatsu made by delegations from Shenyang.

As a result, in order to promote mutual exchange and further increase the number of visitors from China, in particular, from Shenyang, the Hamamatsu Mayor visited Shenyang in August 2010 to conclude the Friendship Exchange Cities Agreement in the field of tourism.

Outline of the City
Shenyang is the capital of Liaoning Province, China. Located in the northeast of the country, the city holds sub-provincial administrative status, which is the same autonomy status as that of a province, due to its importance as a financial center in the area.

Shenyang is an industrial hub and many heavy chemical industries line the outskirts of the city. Shenyang and its neighboring urban areas form a major industrial complex in China which takes advantage of the plentiful resources in the area, such as coal in Fushun, iron ore in Anshan and oilfields in the slightly distant area of Daqing in Heilongjiang Province. This complex was a pillar of industrial support for China in the latter half of the 20th century.

Friendship City
Date of Agreement: April 6, 2012
Population: Approximately 8,700,000 (as of November 1, 2010)
How did the Agreement come about?
Hamamatsu is proactively expanding its inbound tourism projects which aim at increasing the number of international visitors to the city.

In order to increase the number of visitors to Hamamatsu and promote mutual exchange, based on that Hangzhou has “West Lake”, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and that Hamamatsu has “Lake Hamana”, the two cities concluded a Friendship Cities Agreement in 2012, which was the 40th anniversary of the restoration of diplomatic ties between Japan and China and the 30th anniversary of friendship between Zhejiang Province and Shizuoka Prefecture.

Outline of the City
Hangzhou is the capital of Zhejiang Province and is located on the northern bank of the lower reaches of Qiantang River, which flows along the south of the Yangtze River. Hangzhou is at the southern end of the Grand Canal of China which links to Beijing; blessed by a rich natural environment, Hangzhou is an international city where every year, a large number of visitors from within China and from abroad visit the city.

Hangzhou is one of the eight historical capitals of China and has been designated as one of the state-list famous historical and culture cities. West Lake in the city center is a scenic site that attracts many domestic and international visitors. It was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in June 2011.

Hangzhou’s economy is mostly based on its industries (machinery, chemistry, electronics and textiles) and tourism. The city’s specialties are silk, craftworks made from metal and agriculture.

Tourism Exchange City
Date of Agreement: July 31, 2013
Population: Approximately 2,659,000 (As of April 1, 2012)
How did the Agreement come about?
 To fulfill its aim of expanding its visitor population from abroad, Hamamatsu City has been actively developing various international visitor inbound projects. Over the past few years Hamamatsu has had various exchange activities with Taipei, such as reciprocally setting up displays in the Mosaiculture International Hamamatsu 2009 and the Taipei International Flora Exposition in 2010, as well as exchange at UCLG ASPAC meetings.

 In addition, the number of tourists from Taiwan is expected to increase due to reasons such as the increase of flights to Taiwan from Central Japan International Airport and the start of regular flights to Taiwan from Mt. Fuji Shizuoka Airport. As a result, in order to promote mutual exchange and further expand the number of visitors, Hamamatsu concluded a Tourism Exchange Partnership Agreement with Taipei.

Outline of the City
 Being the political and economic center of Taiwan, Taipei is one of Asia’s leading international cities.

 Within the Taiwanese economy, Taipei holds the position as Taiwan’s financial, media and communications hub. Taipei is marked by the high purchasing power of its citizens and the resulting industry developments; tertiary industries such as the service sector make up 90% of Taipei’s economy.

 With many attractive tourist destinations such as the National Palace Museum, Taipei 101, Shilin Night Market, Longshan Temple, etc., many Japanese people visit Taipei every year. Moreover, in adjacent areas, there are numerous hot spring villages such as the Beitou Hot Spring.

Cities With Which a Memorandum of Understanding Has Been Signed
<Music Culture Exchange>
Signing Date: April 23, 2014
Population: Approximately 380,000
How did the Agreement come about?
 Bologna became a member of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network in 2006, has an industrial makeup similar to that of Hamamatsu, and holds achievements as a Creative City in the thematic area of music. Thus, a meeting was held on April 23, 2014 with the mayor of Bologna, Virginio Merola, and a memorandum of understanding regarding music culture exchange was signed in order to strengthen future cooperation between our two cities.


Outline of the City
 Bologna is the capital city of the Emilia-Romagna Region of Italy and developed economically as a transportation hub. It has an area of 140.73km² and a population of roughly 380,000 people. It is an academic city, with the University of Bologna located at its heart, and has an extremely high level of local culture, with a preserved historical city center lined with beautiful rows of unique, red-brick colored buildings.

 Industrially, the machinery manufacturing industry is growing, with the production of Ducati and other motorcycles, medical instruments, leather processing equipment, and packaging equipment. The city is also known as a culinary mecca, with its rich food culture adding to Bologna’s charm.


<Cultural and Environmental Exchange>
Signing Date: December 19, 2014
Population: Approximately 2,540,000 (as of 2013)
How did the Agreement come about?
 There is a lot of grass-roots exchange between Bandung and Hamamatsu, with the Hamamatsu-Indonesia Friendship Association of Hamamatsu and Persada (a group for people with experience studying in Japan) of Bandung taking central roles. In addition, Bandung and Hamamatsu had already successfully cooperated in the area of waste disposal, through the 2008–2009 JICA Grassroots Technical Cooperation Project.

 During the UCLG ASPAC Executive Bureau Meeting 2014, Hamamatsu, held in June 2014, the mayors of Bandung and Hamamatsu held discussions in person, where they reached a mutual agreement that cooperation should be carried out in the fields of culture and the environment. Following this, the cities signed an LoI with the aim of building cooperative relationships in these areas.


Outline of the City
 Bandung is the capital of West Java Province in the Republic of Indonesia, with an area of 167.67 km² and a population of 2,540,000. Sitting on a plateau 675 to 1050m above sea level, it is a popular city for escaping the heat. It also boasts an academic and cultural side, home to the Bandung Institute of Technology, a top-level Indonesian university.

 With regards to industry, textile manufacture is widespread and the production of batik (cloth patterned through a wax-resist dyeing technique) is particular to the region. Taking advantage of such characteristics, Bandung aims to become a UNESCO Creative City in the thematic area of Design.

Hamamatsu City Hall
103-2 Motoshiro-cho, Naka-ku, Hamamatsu, 430-8652 JAPAN
(International Affairs Division)
TEL:+81-(0)53-457-2359, FAX:+81-(0)50-3730-1867
E-mail:kokusai@city.hamamatsu.shizuoka.jp