Commonwealth of Virginia, USA
Population: 8.33 million
The Commonwealth of Virginia is located in the South Atlantic region of the United States. It is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean (E), North Carolina and Tennessee (S), Kentucky and West Virginia (W), and Maryland and the District of Columbia. Virginia is nicknamed the "Old Dominion" due to its status as the first colonial possession established in mainland British America, and "Mother of Presidents" because eight U.S. presidents were born there, more than any other state. In 1607 the London Company established the Colony of Virginia as the first permanent New World English colony. It was one of the 13 Colonies in the American Revolution and it became a state on June 25, 1788.
Virginia is one of the richest states in the southern region of United States. Forbes magazine voted Virginia as the best state in the country for business. Its economy is strong and diversified, with the Gross Domestic Product of 2014 being $427.45 billion, up by 0.02% year on year. The services sector employs one-third of the total population. Agriculture, manufacturing, technology, finance and government are other major sectors. Virginia is the famous for coal, tobacco and computer chips. It is the fifth-largest producer of tobacco in the country and is home to the world's largest Internet service provider. Virginia is headquarters to 35 Fortune 1000 firms, and ranks third among the 50 states as a recipient of federal R&D funds. More than 750 internationally owned businesses from over 40 countries are located in the Commonwealth. It exported $19.2 billion of merchandise in 2014.
On 8 June 2004, Mme. Wang Meixiang, Vice Governor of Fujian and the Hon. Mark Warner, Governor of Virginia signed the Agreement to establish the Sister Province Relationship.