On 9 and 10 February 2020, ESCAP Executive Secretary Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana joined distinguished delegates and urban development champions at the 10th World Urban Forum in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.
At the Forum, the Executive Secretary engaged in several sessions on sustainable urban development and reiterated that urban growth must be aligned with resilient, climate-sensitive and low-carbon development. In ESCAP’s side-event on the Future of Asian and Pacific Cities Report and a session on complex urban development organized by the Russian Federation, she presented key takeaways from the report and shared 15 policy pathways for smart, sustainable cities.
The Executive Secretary also discussed Asia-Pacific’s role in global initiatives, including UN reform and the New Urban Agenda. She shared outcomes of the 7th Asia-Pacific Urban Forum, highlighting the Penang Platform for Action as a critical mechanism for regional cooperation on urban development goals.
On the sidelines of the Forum, ESCAP and UN-HABITAT signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) reaffirming their long-standing partnership for livable cities. Commenting on the agreement, Ms. Alisjahbana underscored that the MoU would bring partnerships and technical assistance to Asia-Pacific cities to advance local actions for the SDGs.
She also held bilateral meetings with key government representatives and think tanks advocating for sustainable urban development, including H.E. Nikita Stasishin, Deputy Housing Minister of the Russian Federation and Ms. Norliza Hashim, CEO of Urbanice Malaysia.