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MoU between capitals

Partnership brings Edinburgh-Beijing air link closer

Gordon Dewar and Beijing airport president and CEO ZhiLiang Han at the signing


Edinburgh and Beijing airports have signed a ground breaking partnership to share ideas and best practice – and hopefully accelerate the launch of a direct service between the two capitals

The agreement emerged from a visit by Edinburgh Airport chief executive Gordon Dewar to the Beijing Global Friend Airports CEO Forum last year.

A delegation from Beijing airport, led by President and CEO ZhiLiang Han, arrived in Edinburgh to sign a Memorandum of Understanding and learn more about Scotland’s capital.

Mr Dewar said: “We are honoured to welcome colleagues from BCIA to sign this partnership agreement. I believe that the shared understanding that it will create will allow us to be more competitive in the Chinese market and brings the prospect of a direct air link between Scotland and China ever closer.

“The Belt and Road initiative of China is clear and ambitious. Well, we’re at the end of that road and want to understand how we can make sure we can play a part.

“BCIA is massive organisation, processing 94.39 million passengers a year. We can learn lots from them.

“Our performance in Edinburgh has made airports across the world sit up and take note and I‘m sure that there are areas in which we can offer ideas to Beijing.

“This is an exciting new chapter for our airport and the whole team is looking forward to working together and forging a strong bond.”

Lord Provost, Frank Ross, said: “This visit will further strengthen the already close relationship Edinburgh enjoys with China.

“Our investment team already has a strong presence through various channels promoting Edinburgh as a quality location for investment throughout China and our many other links include the two pandas Tian Tian and Yang Guang being gifted to Edinburgh by the Chinese Government to horticultural connections dating back over 100 years.

“A strong partnership is also now in place incorporating our work in life sciences through the Memorandum of Understanding signed recently between the University of Edinburgh and the Shenzhen Peoples’ hospital and partner Hua-Xia Healthcare on diabetes.

“And we even have our own Chinese New Year celebrations here in the city, marked this year by a special concert in the Usher Hall.”

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