A Chester County commissioner will travel to China on Sunday on a mission to represent the county and help develop an economic and cultural partnership with a district there.

Terence Farrell expects to return May 20 with a signed friendship agreement from Yongchuan district that both sides hope will lead to business opportunities.

The agreement paves the way for potential student exchanges, job creation in the county, and other ventures, such as selling heifers in China, Farrell said.

Farrell will personally pay for his travel, which he said will cost less than $3,000, and the Chinese municipality will pay for his lodging and meals.

The county plans to send more representatives to the district in October and hopes to use grant money to finance the trip.

Last October, a delegation of 25 Chinese business people toured Chester County, including West Chester University, Pietro Mushrooms, and Longwood Gardens. The county told the group about its manufacturing, agriculture, and tourism industries.

Chester County-based ABD International and the Main Line Chinese Culture Center started the dialogue between the county and several regions in China.

Farrell said he knows how to say in Chinese some basic phrases, including "Hello," "Goodbye," "Thank you," and "My name is Terence Farrell."

610-313-8207 @MichaelleBond