TAIPEI, June 9 (Xinhua) -- Governor of east China's Zhejiang Province Lu Zushan started an eight-day visit to Taiwan Wednesday with the aim of deepening economic and cultural cooperation between the two regions.
Under the theme "Visiting Friends, Conducting Exchanges and Cooperation," the delegation will launch cooperation programs with Taiwanese counterparts in finance, agriculture, tourism, culture and education.
The delegation will learn about Taiwan's experience in environment protection, disaster response and relief, and public services at the grassroots level.
The delegation will also visit residential communities, villages and enterprises to communicate with local residents.
Apart from provincial government officials, the delegation also includes entrepreneurs. One of the entrepreneurs is Ma Yun, CEO of Zhejiang-based Alibaba Group, the parent of Alibaba.com, the global e-commerce site for small and medium businesses that connects buyers and sellers.
During a meeting between Lu and the Taiwan-based Kuomintang's (KMT) honorary chairman, Wu Poh-hsiung, Wednesday, both sides expressed their hopes to increase the number of Zhejiang residents visiting the island this year.
Nearly 130,000 Zhejiang residents visited Taiwan last year, accounting for about 20 percent of the Chinese mainland's total, according to Lu.
Both Lu and Wu expected the number of Zhejiang visitors to exceed 180,000 this year.
Zhejiang is where many Taiwan people come from.
"More than one million Taiwanese people are natives of Zhejiang," Lu said.
The province is also a magnet for Taiwanese investment. The trade volume between Zhejiang and Taiwan hit 9.06 billion U.S. dollars last year, according to Lu.
Since the beginning of this year, leading officials from various municipalities and provinces - Shanghai, Hubei, Fujian, Guizhou, Qinghai, Shandong and Sichuan - and the ministries of commerce and agriculture have led delegations to Taiwan to boost cooperation and exchanges with the island.