According to representatives of the Union Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry (MoHUA), mayors from a few G20 cities would likely gather in Ahmedabad in July to plan out a road map for urban development as part of India’s year-long presidency of the group.
Monday saw the launch of the Urban-20, or U20, a platform for G20 cities in Ahmedabad, which was chosen as the event’s host city. Bhupendra Patel, the chief minister of Gujarat, unveiled U20’s logo, website, and social media accounts.
Kunal Kumar, joint secretary of MoHUA and U20 coordinator emphasised the significance of the activities under U20 on Tuesday. He told The Indian Express that “India is set to add more people to its cities in the next two decades than the whole population of the United States.” When it comes to the future of cities, it is crucial that we take the initiative.
The first gathering of the cities’ sherpas, or representatives from the chosen cities, will take place in Ahmedabad on February 9 and 10. According to a statement from the ministry on Tuesday, the priority areas are “encouraging environmentally responsive behavior, ensuring water security, accelerating climate finance, leveraging ‘local’ potential and identity, reinventing urban governance and planning frameworks, and catalysing digital urban futures.”
A U20 communique would be written following that summit and approved by mayors from the G20 nations. According to Kumar, the mayors’ meeting will probably take place in July 2023. The chosen cities are Bengaluru, Mumbai, and Delhi.
The U20 project was launched in 2018 with Buenos Aires serving as the host city. Tokyo, Riyadh, Milan, and Rome were the following years’ hosts, followed by Jakarta.
According to the ministry, U20, one of the G20’s engagement groups, gives cities from G20 nations a forum to facilitate discussions on a variety of crucial issues relating to urban development, such as climate change, social inclusion, sustainable mobility, affordable housing, and financing of urban infrastructure, and to offer collective solutions. The U20 works to raise the profile of cities on an international scale while keeping in mind the significance of cities as growth and development centres.
It stated that the Ahmedabad mayor would hand the U20 communique to Prime Minister Narendra Modi or a representative of him.