Rennes, France

Rennes is the capital of Brittany District in France. It is where the district council is situated and is the regional political, economic and cultural center and the tenth-largest city in France. Located west of Paris, Rennes is 370 km from the capital or a two hours by train. It covers 558 sq km, with farmland occupying 65 percent. The population of the city is 340,000. Rennes has 33 towns.

The city council is composed of 59 members, with a ruling party of 47 and an opposition of 12. The current mayor, Edmund Lowa, was first elected as Rennes's mayor in 1977. From 1981 to 1986, he served as a minister of the French government and again from 1981 to 1993. In 1995 and 2001, he was re-elected the city's mayor.

Rennes has a well-developed economy, and is especially strong in agriculture, animal husbandry, fisheries and machinery manufacturing. One of its most vibrant activities is the annual international trade fair, which attracts about 360,000 participants. Rennes's biggest industry is agricultural and sideline products processing, and it is the largest milk base in France. The second-largest industry is automobile manufacturing, with the famous Citroen Automobile Company located there. In addition, the city is also strong in high and new technology such as electronics, communications, printing and aviation. Many world-famous companies have scientific research institutions and branches in the city, such as Japan's Canon, which built a production enterprises and scientific research center there. The aviation accessories factory of Italy's Alliance Company is also based in Rennes. The city has 15,000 companies, with 670 having more than 50 employees.

Rennes is renowned as a science and research city. It hosts 60 scientific research institutions, of which 40 are associated with major national institutions. Their 3,500 researchers are mainly engaged studying  communications, food, and medical and health care. France's only National Health School is located in the city.

Rennes is equipped with a high and new technology development zone, which has two comprehensive universities, 12 institutes of higher learning and research, and 60,000 college students.

The quality of the labor force in the city is higher than the average level in France. Because it is in western France, labor is relatively cheap, and due to the late industrialization process, people in the region have kept the traditional spirit of hard work.

Rennes International Airport carries 300,000 tourists every year and  has about 30 international routes and 60 flights a day.

Rennes has 15 friendly sister cities. It is a member of the International Friendly City Union. In 1999, Sun Shuyi, the government secretary of Jinan, led a friendly delegation to Rennes to discuss a sister-city agreement on the basis of the strengthening exchanges between the two places. At the end of 2000, the application for Jinan and Rennes's friendly relationship was approved by the National Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries. The mayor of the city, Edmond, signed the agreement in Jinan in July 2002.

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