DULUTH -- Just two weeks ago, Gwinnett officials made business connections in "the Chicago on the Yangtze River."
On Monday, a delegation from the western China city of Chongqing made a return visit.
"Sincerely, I hope this event can promote bilateral investment ... in Chongqing and America," said the city's deputy general-secretary Yan Xiaoguang, through a translator, at a Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce breakfast Monday. "Let us seize the opportunity and step forward hand-in-hand into a bright future."
Along with a nine member delegation, featuring the office director of a leading Chinese automobile company and vice presidents of a machinery and electronics group, Yan made the trek to metro Atlanta to promote the world's largest city, which has a population of 32 million.
The city is a key party of China's "go west" strategy, and has valuable air, water and land transportation to link it to the world, including a recently complete rail line to Rotterdam.
"We have the best opportunities in China," Jun Lin, a native of Chongqing who now lives in metro Atlanta, said in introducing the city.
Gwinnett Chairwoman Charlotte Nash, who traveled as part of a delegation from Gwinnett to China earlier this month, said the timing for the group's trip here was "fortuitous." While there are no immediate announcements of business ties, she said there could be some soon.
"It's unusual for these groups to come to Atlanta," she said, pointing to more frequent trips to places like New York and Los Angeles. "These kind of things take time to nurture. ... (But) they are very focused on opening up their area for western trade. the timing should be very good."
Nash declared Yan an honorary citizen of Gwinnett County and presented him with a collection of American coins, while Yan gave Nash a gift of a painted wooden vase.