Maritime ports become twin cities
The city of Southampton has become the sister city of Miami-Dade County, in the US state of Florida, at a formal event that took place in the Mayor’s parlour at the Civic centre today.
As part of the city’s vision to nurture global partnerships and to be known internationally for its pioneering role in human discovery, and as a green and smart city as well as a city of culture, the twinning ceremony celebrated the similarities between the two international maritime cities.
Originally from Southampton, and now working as the Consul General at the British Consulate in Miami, Nicolette Brent initiated conversations with the council to highlight the links between the two great ports and to suggest the possibility that the cities formally sign a sister agreement.
Miami is home to the Carnival Corporation & plc and a key location for a number of other international cruise lines including Norwegian Cruise Lines. Miami has an international port, an international airport, is home to one of the largest international cruise conferences Seatrade 2020 - the world's annual cruise industry gathering and the Miami International Boat Show. The ABP Southampton team attend the Seatrade event in Miami with other local partners.
Joining Southampton City Council’s Leader, Southampton’s Mayor and the Chief Operations Officer of the council at the ceremony were the Mayor of Miami-Dade County Carlos Gimenez, Manny Gonzalez - Chief of Economic Development and International Trade for Miami-Dade County, Port Director Juan Kuryla and Alex Ferro Mayor Gimenez’ Chief of Staff.
The itinerary for the visit included a visit of the Port of Southampton, given the developing relationship between the two ports, with the Mayor of Southampton welcoming the Miami delegation to the Civic Centre for the Civic signing ceremony, in the Mayor’s parlour.
Councillor Christopher Hammond, Leader of Southampton City Council said: “Like Southampton, Miami is a gateway to the world, and for hundreds of years people and goods have come to this confident and open maritime city to trade and visit.
"Forging a new partnership with Miami is a natural step — linking up with another innovative global port city. Southampton is at the forefront of discovery and trade, leading on the development of new relationships with international partners and investors.
"The UK has always taken a leading role in responding to global challenges and in making the most of opportunities. Now, more than ever, Southampton has a leading role to play in enhancing our global standing, reinvesting in our relationships.”
Mayor of Miami-Dade County Carlos Gimenez said: “Miami-Dade County and Southampton have much in common. Our ports are both leaders in trade and tourism through our cargo and cruise activity. I look forward to growing our relationship as sister cities and sister ports through the strengthening of our cultural and commercial ties, and I anticipate the development of economic opportunities for us both.”
Alastair Welch, Director at Port of Southampton, said: “We are pleased to be officially linked with our friends at PortMiami and hope we can mutually benefit from lessons learned around successes seen on both sides.”
From L-R: Miami-Dade County Port Director - Juan Kuryla, Mayor Gimenez’ Chief of Staff - Alex Ferro, Leader of Southampton City Council - Councillor Christopher Hammond, Mayor of Miami-Dade County - Carlos Gimenez, Chief Operations Officer at Southampton City Council - Richard Crouch, Mayor of Southampton - Councillor Peter Baillie.