Officials from the Massachusetts Port Authority (Massport) and the Port of Dalian Authority of the People’s Republic of China met in Boston today to sign an historic agreement, officially naming the ports of Boston and Dalian sister ports. Under the agreement, the two ports will exchange information and explore ways to improve trade, traffic and services between them. The exchanges will include providing technical assistance, improving productivity and usage of equipment and promoting marketing and other campaigns designed to increase trade and business opportunities. “China has always been important to Massachusetts,” said Craig P. Coy, Massport CEO. “Today, Asia is still New England’s largest trading partner. This agreement pledges our commitment to work together so that we may contribute to the effectiveness of our ports in today’s competitive global climate.” Massport’s CEO, Craig P. Coy signed the agreement with China’s, Xia Deren, Mayor, Dalian Municipal Government and Hui Kai, Director, Dalian Municipal Port Authority of the People’s Republic of China. The signing ceremony was hosted by Massport’s port director, Mike Leone and took place at Massport’s Logan Office Center. It was attended by Massachusetts officials including House Representative Dan Bosley, Chairman of the Joint Committee on Economic Development and Emerging Technology and Mark Maloney, Director of the Boston Redevelopment Authority. “This is an important day in the history of our two ports,’ said Xia Deren, Mayor Dalian Municipal Government. “We look forward to working with the Port of Boston to enhance our mutual business.” A partnership between Massport and COSCO (China Ocean Shipping Company) was formed three years when COSCO and its partners began direct ocean carrier service into the Port of Boston. This service has resulted in COSCO’s Boston business five-fold increase and cargo volumes in Boston’s Conley Container Terminal climbing 45%. The COSCO relationship has been extremely beneficial to New England importers and exporters as well, allowing them to be much more competitive in overseas markets.