???Governance key to ensure gains of urban development to all???

???Governance key to ensure gains of urban development to all???

Seeking to evolve an Implementation Plan for the next 20 years for realising the goal of equitable urban development through the building of inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable cities, 68 countries of Asia Pacific Region recently took part in three-day deliberations in New Delhi. Minister of Housing & Urban Poverty Alleviation and Urban Development M Venkaiah Naidu inaugurated the ???Asia-Pacific Ministerial Conference on Housing and Urban Development.???

In his inaugural address, Naidu stressed that ???Governance holds the key to ensuring that no one is left behind in benefitting from the gains of urban development and in making cities inclusive, safe, resilient (ability to cope up with natural disasters and other risks) and sustainable.??? Voicing concern over weak governance structures in most of the member countries of the region, he said that over the last two years, the Government has taken several initiatives to improve technical, planning and managerial capabilities of city governments in India. This is being done through promoting e-governance, capacity building, enhancement of resource base of cities etc., under different new urban missions.

Naidu further said that to the three principles of sustainable development i.e. equity, economy and environment, governance needs to be added as the fourth dimension, given its importance.

Stating that the Asia Pacific Region accounts for 55% of the global urban population with over one billion living in slums and accounting for 75% of global fatalities due to natural disasters, Naidu urged the member countries to mount collective efforts to face challenges in the context of rapid urbanisation in the region.

Giving an account of India???s urban development strategies for the next 20 years, Naidu said the objectives of New Urban Agenda include integrated urban policies in line with cooperative federalism, eliminating barriers to the flow of capital, land and labour, development of rural and urban areas in a synergetic manner, promoting inclusive and sustainability in urban planning and management and ensuring social justice and gender equality.

The 6th Asia-Pacific Ministerial Conference on Housing and Urban Development was the first such meet after New Urban Agenda for inclusive and sustainable urban development for the next 20 years was adopted at the Habitat-III global conference in Quito, Ecuador in October 2016.

Source : Urbannewdigest

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