South West Wales

Swansea forges links with Chinese city Wuhan

The agreement being signed in Swansea Image copyright Swansea council

Swansea has strengthened a century-and-a-half association with one of China's fastest-growing cities.

It has signed of an agreement with Wuhan, the capital of Hubei province.

It will see authorities cooperate in the fields of economy and trade, transport and logistics, culture and sports, and education and tourism.

Links between the two began in 1855, when Swansea's Griffith John founded the Wuhan Union Hospital.

He set sail for China as a penniless 24-year-old missionary with a zeal to spread the gospel through good works.

The hospital he founded is now, 150 years later, one of China's biggest - with more than 5,000 inpatient beds and treating 3.5 million patients annually.

Image copyright Swansea Museum
Image caption Griffith John founded one of China's biggest hospitals

For the past four years Wuhan Union Hospital has been collaborating with Swansea University's Medical School.

The new broader agreement between Swansea and Wuhan was signed on Monday during a Chinese delegation visit to Swansea's Guildhall.

Councillor Robert Francis-Davies, Swansea council's cabinet member for enterprise, development and regeneration, said: "The agreement we've signed with Wuhan will have benefits for both cities because it will enable us to learn from one another in areas ranging from transport and health to education and tourism.

"Wuhan is the engine of central China's economy, so we look forward to hearing their ideas and sharing examples of best practice with them to improve Swansea as a city in future."

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