Not a new treatment for swine flu but a representation of the desire to have a direct link between Manchester and the West Coast of the United States (you can't bike or walk it ), one of the objectives of a co-operation agreement being signed here today between the City of Los Angeles and the City of Manchester.
Earlier this year a small delegation from Manchester, ably supported by Bob Pierce the then British Consul-General in Los Angeles, spent a little over 24 hours in LA and were staggered by the response we got from dozens of companies including household names like Dreamworks and Disney, interested in what we were doing here, particularly in media related industries, and looking for opportunities to do business with us.
There are a surprising number of synergies between LA and Manchester, not just in media but also in Higher Education, Sports Events and event based tourism, tackling climate change, investing in public transport (yes the home of the freeway now also has light rail), and, in a very diverse population, tackling the impacts of the recession. I also met Councilmember Tom Labonge and spent a few hours with him looking round the district he represents, an area bigger than Bury MBC's area which includes the Hollywood sign as well as some areas of severe deprivation. Today we are delighted to welcome Tom to Manchester.
Later in the day we sign the formal co-operation agreement but before that Tom does a walking tour of the City Centre before whistle-stop visits to Media City and Sportcity, visits that reinforce the potential for working together to the benefit of citizens of both cities.
Manchester's future, its only future is as an international city. To do that, working with cities like Los Angeles is absolutely essential.