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The 1st Session of the Preparatory Committee of the 3rd

UN-HABITAT III Opens: Reaffirm the Importance of Sustainable Development of Cities

 (IESCO New York Duan Ying) on Sep. 17, The first session of the preparatory Committee of the Third United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (HABITAT III) opened in UN Headquarters in New York. UN Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director of UN-Habitat Joan Clos announced the opening of the meeting and read the progress report. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon attended the meeting and made a speech.

This meeting is the first preparatory meeting for the Third United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (HABITAT III) slated in 2016, aiming to review the implementation outcomes of HABITAT II and identify the new challenges in the development process of development of sustainable cities. The two-day meeting is made up of the election of the preparatory panel for HABITAT III, progress report by Secretary-General of UN-HABITAT on the preparations and other agendas including financing of HABITAT III, the up-coming conference arrangement of the preparatory panel, etc..

UN Under Secretary-General and Executive Director of UN-Habitat Joan Clos extended gratitude on behalf of Secretariat of UN-HABITAT to delegations of all countries, social organizations, civil societies, private sectors, among others, for their long-term support to HABITAT and made the UN-HABITAT Secretary-General report. The report reviewed the Istanbul Declaration on Human Settlements and Habitat Agenda voted through in HABITAT II, and the giant progress made by countries aligned with the principles, and purposes within. It also revealed a chain of challenges which urbanization still grapple with, including the unbridled expansion, traffic congestion, emission of greenhouse gas, acceleration of inequality, youth unemployment and so on.

The report also pointed out that, the UN-HABITAT III planned to be convened in 2016 will seek to re-make political commitment on development of sustainable cities. Aside from evaluating the existing achievements, it will continue to address all sorts of new and burgeoning world-wide challenges in urban development. The report shows that, HABITAT III will utilize the outcome of branch and head conferences within UN and the forces of international community to give emphasis to the adjustment, innovation and transcendence of Habitat Agenda, striving to become an important took to implement post 2015 agenda and realize "The City Future We Desire". Meantime, the report stressed that HABITAT III will be closely knitted with the climate change progress within UN.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon attended the meeting and congratulated the newly-elected preparatory panel of HABITAT-III, saying that, the preparatory meeting on the following day of the UNGA represented the importance of urbanization to the modern world. Human beings are at the centre of concerns for sustainable development, and adequate shelter for all is the source for realizing sustainable human development.

To avert the deteriorating situation of global human settlements and take necessary means to realize sustainable development finally, the first United Nations Conference on Human Settlements was held in Vancouver, Canada in 1976. Except the Vancouver Declaration on Human Settlements, the conference also set up Centre for Human Settlements and related bodies(the predecessor of UN-HABITAT which was founded in 1977). Habitat II was celebrated in Istanbul, Turkey, in July 1996. In resolution 66/207 and in line with the bi-decennial cycle (1976, 1996 and 2016), Habitat III, the United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development, is to take place in 2016 to reinvigorate the global commitment to sustainable urbanization, to focus on the implementation of a “New Urban Agenda”.

As a strategic partner of UN-HABITAT, IESCO representatives attended the preparatory meeting. IESCO Director-General Jiang Mingjun said, it would make continuous efforts to create better habitat for the human being with UN-HABITAT. In its early stage, IESCO had established close partnership with UN-HABITAT on ecological safety, poverty alleviation, youth employment, etc., and the two parties signed strategic MoU in 2011 and 2013, which includes co-publishing UNITY magazine, China Urban Youth Research Report, implementing jointly the program of UN Youth Empowerment and Urban Ecological Safety, among others.                                                               Opening of First Session of Habitat III Preparatory Committee 

                                                    UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moondelivered a speech








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