For the 5th consecutive time, the City of Espoo has been facilitating the annual Moon Festival celebration, enabling Chinese and Finnish traditions, businesses and cultures mingle together in a unique setting at the annual Mid-Autumn Mingle in Hanasaari.
The event programme started with a seminar highlighting the sustainable growth of cities and happiness of their residents. Speakers from China, Finland and Sweden were sharing the experiences and ideas about international cooperation in urban planning and sustainability as key elements in city planning and development.
Photo: From the left professor Ilkka Niemelä, president of the Aalto University, Chen Li, Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China in Finland, Jin Yueming, Deputy Director-General, Municipal Commission Office of Public Sectors Reform from Shanghai, Jukka Mäkelä, Mayor of the City of Espoo, Tuula Antola, Director of Economic and Urban Development, City of Espoo
Jin Yueming, Deputy Director-General, Municipal Commission Office of Public Sectors Reform from Shanghai said in his speech: “When I came to Espoo, I was impressed about the fresh air and the blue sky in addition to innovation and technology. These all are highly valued elements on our Shanghai - Espoo sister city collaboration.”
The seminar part was concluded with the lively debate CityTalk, where Tuula Antola, Director of Economic and Urban Development at the City of Espoo, Ulf Ranhagen, Senior Professor and Researcher KTH/Chalmers/Tongji and Chief Architect at Sweco Architects, Gunilla Bökmark, Director of International Relations at the City of Gothenburg, and Hanna Uusitalo, Environmental director at KONE were sharing their visions and practices how to build cities happier, healthier, and more productive by having sustainable approach. Quoting Tuula Antola and Hanna Uusitalo: “Profitable business and environmental issues can go hand in hand. And we must improve the quality of life while reducing consumption and use of energy, transport and resources.”
Photo: Tuula Antola, Director of Economic and Urban Development, City of Espoo on stage talking about Espoo -most sustainable city in Europe
The second part of the event was dedicated to the special occasion, the celebration of Espoo – Shanghai sister city 20th anniversary of fruitful collaboration and close friendship. The celebration was opened by Jukka Mäkelä, Mayor of the City of Espoo and Chen Li, Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China in Finland, who pointed out that sustainability works not only as a driver for businesses but also as a great opportunity for Finnish businesses in China.
According to Jaani Heinonen, Head of Business Finland, Espoo has become the benchmark for all Finnish cities to foster the cooperation with China and especially Shanghai.
After the official celebration, the event continued with a networking dinner in which all participants could mingle together in informal atmosphere, backed by talented Chinese musicians Yin Liwei, Zhenqi Li, and brothers Jamin and Jason Hu.
Photo: Networking dinner provided a great platform for building bridges between people, cultures, and businesses
The event provided a notable opportunity for social interaction and was certainly a great occasion for networking, exchanging experiences, and learning from each other.
“I believe our close collaboration and partnership is a great opportunity to build our cities, economies and all society more sustainable, more functional, and more human-centered,” concluded Jukka Mäkelä, the Mayor of the City of Espoo.
Photo: Espoo, Shanghai and Gothenburg meet to highlight the importance of sustainability and happiness in the development of the cities
For more information contact:
Head of International Affairs, Mayor’s office, City of Espoo
+358 43 824 4911