Mayor travels to Taiwan
Mayor Billy Kenoi will return Friday from a weeklong trip to Taiwan.
Kenoi is one of eight mayors from across the nation meeting Taiwan leaders to discuss business, agricultural, educational and cultural ties, Hawaii County said in a press release.
The Republic of China, as the nation is formally known, is hosting the mayors and providing air and hotel accommodations, according to the county.
Mayors from California, Illinois, Tennessee, Texas, Connecticut, Wyoming and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands are also participating.
Hawaii County established a sister-city relationship with the County of Haulian in Taiwan in 1971, and former Mayor Shen-Shan Hsieh of the County of Haulian led a delegation to the Big Isle in 2007, the county noted.
Taiwan was recently added to the U.S. Visa Waiver Program to encourage travel between the two nations.
China Airlines and Hawaiian Airlines began direct flights between Taipei and Honolulu this year.
County Managing Director Wally Lau is serving as acting mayor until Kenoi returns.
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