A new relationship could be in the works as the City of Lloydminster is considering joining with Nikopol, Ukraine to become a Sister City.
The agreement would be the first of its kind since the Ukranian Free Trade Agreement was enacted in Canada last year. The Sister City agreement outlines the commitment for both cities to develop a relationship between residents, business and community organizations. Mayor Gerald Aalbers says there will be economic benefits to this type of partnership for Lloydminster.
“They do produce oil there in that area so we have a lot of companies in town that have technology and equipment that may be very interesting to take over that way. I think it will help open economic doors.”
Aalbers adds that the City has a large Ukranian population with an active dance club and church community, which will tie together well with for the agreement. Nikopol, Ukraine is the Dnipro region of the country with a population of 117,000, almost four times the size of Lloydminster.
So far there are little projected costs associated with the partnership, however, Aalbers says there could be unknown financial obligations down the road.
“If the Mayor and some councillors decide to come and visit we would likely host them in a very formal manner. We’d also tour them in the community, provide them with a welcoming gift and some pins and things like that.”
Money is already being spent through economic development to increase business in the community and Aalbers says this is another way of doing that for the City. The proposed agreement will be back in a future City Council meeting for a decision.