The China International Friendship Cities Association (CIFCA) is a non-profit national organization of the People's Republic of China with the status of a legal entity. It was set up in Beijing in March 1992 under the sponsorship of the Chinese People's Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries (CPAFFC). It has more than 400 member cities in China's 31 provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities directly under the Central Government (not including Taiwan Province, Hong Kong and Macao Special Administrative Regions). The mission of CIFCA, a sister organization of CPAFFC, is to actively promote the establishment of friendship-city relations between cities and local governments of China and other countries and to enhance exchanges and cooperation in the fields of economy, science and technology and culture with a view to developing international friendship-city relations, promoting practical cooperation, implementing foreign policy of peace and serving local development.
The CIFCA's main tasks include: to coordinate and oversee the work of establishing and developing friendship-city relations between China and other countries and provide guidance for the establishment of friendship-city relations between Chinese local governments and their counterparts in other countries on a voluntary basis of equality and mutual benefit; to participate in international cooperation by sending delegations, establishing exchange platforms and mechanisms for Chinese and foreign cities and holding forums, performances and exhibitions; to solve the problems in the friendship-city work of its member cities and to offer consulting services, expertise and skill trainings related to international friendship-city activities.
According to the CIFCA constitution, the National Congress of Members is the highest authority of CIFCA. It is elected for a term of five years and shall exercise the functions of formulating and amending the CIFCA constitution. Its executive body is the Council with the president, several vice presidents, and the secretary-general. The Council is under the supervision of the National Congress. When the National Congress is not in session, the Council takes charge of the Association and attends to the day-to-day work of CIFCA.
Ever since 1973 when China launched the friendship-city activities, we have made great progress in the development of friendship-city relations. Over the past several decades, following the principles of friendship, mutual benefit and actual achievements, Chinese cities have made remarkable progress in exchanges and cooperation with their counterparts in other countries. While advancing the development of friendship-city relations, CIFCA has worked hard to develop relations of friendship and cooperation with friendship-city organizations and relevant institutions in other countries. It has now established such relations with its counterparts in Japan, the United States, the Republic of Korea, Russia, Australia, Germany, France, Italy, Brazil, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, Thailand, the Philippines and other countries as well as many multilateral international organizations including United Nations Alliance of Civilizations, Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of Council of Europe, Euro-mediterranean Partnership of the Local and Regional Authorities, Network of Associations of Local Authorities of South-East Europe and Lake Victoria Region Local Authorities Cooperation.