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City of Montreal (Quebec, Canada)

Aerial Photo of Montreal

Sister City Agreement

Established on June 4, 1998 (date of Hiroshima City Council approval)

Montreal Facts and Figures

Who's in charge?
Mayor Valérie Plante (inaugurated November 16, 2017)

How many people live there?
Approximately 1.8 million (as of July 2018)

How big is Montreal?
365 km squared (approximately 0.4 times the size of Hiroshima City)

Where is it?
In the southernmost part of the Province of Quebec in eastern Canada, Montreal occupies the Island of Montreal in the St. Lawrence River.

What's the weather like?
Home to warm, humid summers and cold, snowy winters, averaging 26C in July and -6C in January.

Get to Know Montreal

Hosting the 1976 Olympic Games, Montreal is the largest city in the Province of Quebec with a population of 1.8 million, making it one of the three largest cities in Canada. Montreal is known as the "Paris of North America", combining the elegance of long-standing French tradition and culture with British and other influences to create its own unique culture as a modern and international city.

Famous not only for having the world's largest botanical gardens, but for its involvement in the arts, Montreal regularly hosts symphony orchestras, opera companies, an international fireworks display, as well as international jazz and film festivals. As for industry, Montreal is home to thriving cutting-edge sectors in high technology, IT, and biotechnology, as well as electronic communications, aerospace, pharmaceuticals, petrol chemicals, and foodstuffs.

In January 2002, Montreal City merged with the 28 local governments of the former Montreal Urban Community to create a new, unified city administration.

A Little History About Our Sister City Agreement

The relationship between Hiroshima and Montreal began in 1986 when the Mayor of Hiroshima delivered a speech at the International Conference on Peace and Security in Montreal.

Following the conference, mutual visits by delegation groups began, and further peace-related exchanges followed. Montreal became a member of Mayors for Peace (formerly the World Conference of Mayors for Peace through Intercity Solidarity) and sent a representative to Hiroshima's Peace Memorial Ceremony, exchanges between our respective botanical gardens also took place, in addition to Japanese-Canadian exchange groups and trade missions, all culminating in the signing of a Sister City Agreement.

The signing took place in Montreal on May 19, 1998 during a delegation visit by the Mayor of Hiroshima and Hiroshima City Council Chairperson. In the agreement, it states that both cities will "promote the development of Hiroshima and Montreal, foster mutual understanding and friendship, and contribute to lasting world peace through a broad range of exchanges."

Building Bridges Through Exchange

Peace Bell in the Japanese Garden of the Montreal Botanical Garden

Peace-related exchanges continue between our two cities today and every year on August 6 (August 5 in Montreal), the City of Montreal organizes a Peace Memorial Ceremony to coincide with the Hiroshima Ceremony in the Japanese Garden at the Montreal Botanical Garden. The ceremony rings the Peace Bell, a gift from Hiroshima in commemoration of their sister city agreement, at the precise time of the bombing (8:15 am Japan-time, 7:15 pm local time), followed by a public reading of the Mayor of Hiroshima's Peace Declaration in French, English, and Japanese.

In June 2015, Mayor Kazumi Matsui attended the International Economic Forum of the Americas held in Montreal, and the Living Together Summit hosted by Montreal, where he gave lectures about the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, city reconstruction, and urban development initiatives. It was during this visit that Mayor Matsui was awarded honorary citizenship of Montreal.

To commemorate the 20th anniversary of Hiroshima and Montreal's sister city relationship, a delegation of city representatives led by Mayor Valerie Plante, as well as a business and arts delegation totaling 45 people visited Hiroshima in June 2018. To coincide with their visit, Hiroshima held a Montreal Day event celebration, where Mayor Plante was awarded honorary citizenship of Hiroshima. In addition to the festivities, Charles Richard-Hamelin held a piano concert and members of the Cirque Eloize put on a juggling performance in celebration of the two cities. Hiroshima City University also signed partnership agreements with the Universite de Quebec a Montreal and Concordia University.

The String Quartet of the Hiroshima Symphony Orchestra travelled to Montreal in September of the same year and held a commemorative concert featuring joint performances with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra.

Miniature Garden Commemorative Ceremony

Exchanges in the economic sphere continue, including a business exchange between the aerospace industries of both cities. From 2008 to 2011, the City of Hiroshima, in collaboration with the Canadian Embassy in Japan, the Quebec Government Office in Tokyo, and the City of Montreal, invited organizations and businesses related to the aerospace industry to Hiroshima and dispatched groups to universities and research institutions under RIT (the Regional Tie-Up Project) run by JETRO (Japan External Trade Organization).

The City of Hiroshima proudly displays the gifts she has received from her sister city such as the Montreal Miniature Garden in Ushita Sogo Park, the Mosaiculture "Ducks in Flight" at the Hiroshima Botanical Garden, and the "Man of Peace" statue on display at the International Conference Center, donated to mark the 10th anniversary of our sister city ties.

Man of Peace statue

Inquiries regarding this page

International Relations Division, Citizens Affairs Bureau
1-6-34 Kokutaiji-machi, Naka-ku, Hiroshima
Tel: +81 82-504-2106  Fax: +81 82-249-6460
Email: kokusai@city.hiroshima.jp