National Governments’ Actions for the Implementation of the New Urban Agenda towards Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals
The Ministers Roundtable will seek to achieve the following objectives:
1. To provide updates on the progress made since October 2016 following the adoption of the New Urban Agenda, including analysis of policy implementation and main challenges, as well as the main theme of the WUF9 “Cities 2030, Cities for All”;
2. To exchange experiences in implementing initiatives and programmes towards the implementation of the New Urban Agenda and the urban dimensions of the Sustainable Development Goals, including through the promotion of whole-of-government approaches; development of supportive legal and policy frameworks; strengthened governance mechanisms mobilizing all urban stakeholders, and new approaches to financing urbanization;
3. To highlight unique urban development challenges and opportunities of implementing the New Urban Agenda in different regions and countries, in particular in the Least Developed Countries, Middle-Income Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries, Small Island Developing States and in countries in situations of conflict or post-conflict and/or affected by natural and human-made disasters;
4. To explore measures and joint initiatives to collaborate on the implementation of the New Urban Agenda, towards increased and sustained investment in sustainable urbanization for accelerated achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, as well as in the methodologies of data collection and knowledge generation.
5. To exchange ideas on new milestones at the national and global level for the implementation of the New Urban Agenda such as national urban forums or regional urban forums.
The Ninth session of the World Urban Forum (WUF9) takes place under the overall theme of: “Cities 2030, Cities for all: Implementing the New Urban Agenda”. WUF9 is the first session to focus on the implementation of the New Urban Agenda, the outcome document of the United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (Habitat III) held in 2016.
All United Nations Member States endorsed the New Urban Agenda, recognizing its transformative potentials and the shift of paradigm that it brings on how we plan, build, manage and govern cities, as well as in the need for urban policies and integrated actions at all levels. The effective implementation of the New Urban Agenda should contribute to the realization of Agenda 2030 and accelerate the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, including the achievement of SDG11“Making cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable” as well as other goals and targets.
In this regard, the role of national governments is critical in providing an enabling environment by enacting policies and legislation for planning and designing sustainable cities and human settlements. National governments are expected to deliver on the New Urban Agenda by supporting: (i) sustainable urban development for social inclusion and ending poverty; (ii) sustainable and inclusive urban prosperity and opportunities for all; and (iii) environmentally sustainable and resilient urban development. Meeting these transformative commitments requires concrete actions and measures in a range of areas, such as national urban policies, rules and regulations, urban planning and design, urban basic services, housing and slum upgrading, risk reduction and resilience, capacity development and climate resilience mitigation and adaption.
However, there is no blueprint for the implementation process of the New Urban Agenda, as the patterns, progress and challenges of urbanization are different across regions and countries. Therefore, the proposed WUF9 Ministers Roundtable is designed to provide an opportunity for representatives of national governments and their partners to share experiences and take stock of ongoing programmes and initiatives underway to implement the New Urban Agenda and support the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.
The Ministers Roundtable should also discuss on next steps in the collective efforts for the successful implementation of the New Urban Agenda not only at the national level but also trans-national and regional level. These next steps should consider the mid-term review of the New Urban Agenda in 2026, the first report of the implementation of the New Urban Agenda to be submitted in July 2018 to ECOSOC and the Voluntary National Reviews of SDG11 in the High-Level Political Forum also in July 2018.
The following set of selected questions is proposed to guide the WUF9 Ministers Roundtable. It is expected that interventions during that session will adapt to the below conceptual framework in order to safeguard the focus of the debates and capitalize on the momentum of the Roundtable:
• From regional and cross-regional perspectives and one year after Habitat III, what have been the main achievements in terms of implementation of the New Urban Agenda? What have been the main challenges?
• What actions have been advanced to ensure a more whole-of-government and whole-of-society mobilization towards the implementation of the New Urban Agenda? What is the strategy of your government in this regard in the medium and long-term?
• How has your government facilitated investment and innovation in the implementation of the New Urban Agenda?
• Which processes have been put in place to develop national urban policies, and how?
• Which urban legal frameworks, urban and territorial planning frameworks or financing frameworks are being developed to promote sustainable urbanization?
• Which steps have been taken by national governments to empower local governments to facilitate accelerated implementation of the New Urban Agenda at the local level?
• What could be done in the next two years at the regional and global levels to maintain political momentum for the implementation of the New Urban Agenda?