In 2014, the Tripartite Economic Alliance between Auckland, Guangzhou (GZ, China) and Los Angeles (LA, U.S.A.) was signed for a three year period.
The alliance is based on strong previous sister-city relationships. It focuses on increasing trade and investment between the three cities and their surrounding areas, and deepening political and civic engagement.
This is the first trilateral economic international agreement between cities, and sets a new benchmark for city engagement and collaboration. Under the alliance, there have been annual Tripartite Economic Summits. The intention is to implement specific tri-party initiatives and a work programme to meet the shared objective of increasing trade and economic engagement.
The Tripartite Economic Alliance creates a 'platform' and opens doors to meaningful and substantive economic, trade and investment opportunities for Auckland-based businesses, entrepreneurs, and investors. It also allows the parties to get increased benefits from existing people and cultural- focused relationships.
Progress since signing of the tripartite agreement
The tripartite has been a successful collaboration to date, deepening Auckland's connections and visibility with two important international partners and gaining national and international recognition.
Auckland Tourism Events and Economic Development (ATEED), a council-controlled organisation, estimates that opportunities from the Auckland summit have generated a number of potential deals for local companies. Given the time required for business deals to conclude, the commercial results from the LA and Auckland summits will continue to be tracked.
Other initiatives facilitated under the Tripartite Economic Alliance include substantive memoranda of understanding and strategic alliances between business and research institutions that cover ports, design and innovation.
Auckland, LA and Guangzhou have experienced significant interest in the model from cities around the world. It is therefore serving as a potential model for other international city relationships.