WINNIPEG – Mayor Brian Bowman along with Councillor John Orlikow (River Heights) and Marshall Ring, Chief Executive Officer of the Manitoba Technology Accelerator, will be participating the 2019 Smart City Summit and Expo in Taipei, Taiwan next week where they will also be promoting Winnipeg’s many business advantages.

Mayor Bowman will be visiting Winnipeg’s Sister City, Taichung, Taiwan, where he will be meeting with city officials to strengthen Winnipeg’s Sister City partnership with Taichung. Mayor Bowman will also participate together with Ry Moran, Director of the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation, at an event designed to share lessons learned from Canada’s reconciliation journey.

“This is a unique opportunity to connect with global cities on the cutting edge of technology, strengthen our partnership with one of our Sister Cities, promote Winnipeg abroad with one of Manitoba’s leading technology accelerator organizations, as well as support the international work of our National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation,” said Mayor Brian Bowman. “Our sister city in Taichung is a global leader in using technology to help manage a growing city in a smart way, specifically leveraging a strong collaboration between government, business and universities.”

The Mayor will be taking part in a special event on truth and reconciliation together with Ry Moran from the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation. The event brings together representatives from the Canadian Trade Office, the Council of Indigenous Peoples, and the Taiwan Indigenous Historical Justice and Transitional Commission.

"This visit is an important opportunity to share lessons learned from our national processes of reconciliation with our brothers and sisters in Taiwan," said Ry Moran. "We look forward to building many relationships that will be of long term benefit to both Indigenous peoples of Canada and Taiwan. In addition, at the heart of Turtle Island, Winnipeg has a lot to share and we are thrilled the Mayor will be participating with us."

The event builds on the international work of the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation (NCTR). To date, multiple truth commissions from across the world have visited the NCTR to better understand the challenges and success of reconciliation activities underway across Canada. The NCTR's visit to Taiwan will be followed by a similar visit to Malaysia as a part of sharing Canada’s experiences on truth and reconciliation.

Other events hosted by Canada’s trade office in Taiwan will allow for personal introductions to businesses looking to either enter the Canadian market or expand an existing presence.

Taiwan has been represented in the Intelligent Communities Forum (ICF) Top 7 Intelligent Communities every year since 2011, with Taichung having been awarded the ICF’s Top Intelligent Community of the year in 2013. Winnipeg has been selected as a Smart 21 Community seven of the last nine years, and reached the Top 7 in 2014, 2016, and 2018. 

Parts of Taichung, known as the “Golden Valley”, represent clusters with as many as 633 high-tech plants with an annual output of $38.9 billion. It has become the hub for the development of advanced manufacturing equipment, and a strong aerospace industry exists with opportunities to collaborate with Winnipeg’s aerospace sector.

“I am very excited to be attending the Smart City conference with the Mayor,” said Marshall Ring. “The Mayor’s presence and support will help me meet international leaders who can in turn help me attract international startups, moving us closer to making Winnipeg the startup capital of Western Canada where we can build more $100 million companies from this prairie powerhouse.”

The Mayor and other participants depart for Taiwan March 24, returning to Winnipeg on March 31.