HONOLULU (KHON2) — In an effort to promote friendship, economic partnership and cultural exchange, Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi and the mayor of Sakai City in Japan recently signed a sister city agreement.

The ceremony held at Honolulu City Hall was the first time the mayors met in person.

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The sister-city relationship comes at an opportune time as both cities recover from the impact of the pandemic.

“Given everything we’ve been through the last couple of years I think we’re all in a different state of mind of wanting to help each other,” said Blangiardi. “So I’m looking forward very much to exploring those opportunities with mayor Hashimoto.”

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The sister city agreement reaffirms the established relationship Sakai City has with Honolulu, which previously has brought to Waikiki the spectacular fireworks display the City is known for.