The 2017 UCLG World Council gathered over 400 local officials and practitioners from 6 to 9 December 2017 in Hangzhou, China, at the kind invitation of Mayor Xu Liyi.
The meetings were held in conjunction with the Forum on Smart City and Big Data organized by the City of Hangzhou and the Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries (CPAFFC) where local leaders recalled that there is no economic development without social cohesion in cities.
The Executive Bureau, chaired by UCLG President Parks Tau and UCLG Treasurer Berry Vrbanovic, appointed Emilia Saiz as Secretary General of the World Organization, following an international recruitment process.
This year, the UCLG World Council saw the inaugural sessions of the four newly created UCLG Policy Councils on Multilevel Governance, Resilience, the Right to the City, and Opportunities for All, which aim to increase political commitment on the major challenges faced by local governments around the world. The World Council acknowledged the good work done by the Policy Councils and Working Groups.
The World Council, chaired by UCLG Co-President Roland Ries, Mayor of Strasbourg, began with thoughts of solidarity for fellow members of the Council who find themselves in delicate situations, including Mayor Khalifa Sall and Mayor of Diyarbakir, Gültan Kisanak.
The World Council adopted the World Organization’s strategic priorities for 2018-2022, which aim to enhance UCLG’s capacity to continue facilitating the representation of local and regional governments, consolidate the learning network and ensure that the perspective and experience of local and regional governments is included in the monitoring of the implementation of the global development agendas. The World Council further adopted the Work Plan for 2018, which builds on the new strategy.
We have made key progress in many aspects of the development agendas.(...) This would not have been possible without the commitment of the network as a whole: our leadership, our regional sections, our committees, our world secretariat – every part of the network is mobilized behind our common goals and shared vision". Parks Tau, President of UCLG.
The Word Council has adopted the following motions:
Support for Women’s Political Participation at Local Level
In order to strengthen the participation of local elected women in the World Organization and following a proposal by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, the UCLG World Council formally endorsed the appointment of a Global Women’s Caucus in order to ensure the inclusion of women’s perspective in deliberations and policies. The Caucus, composed of 10 local elected women from all world regions, should help enhance the participation of women in all areas of work of the organization and should promote initiatives that will help the World Organization enhance gender equality.
The nominees for each regions are:
AFRICA: Josephine Kasya, Chairperson of Kanungu District; Célestine Ketcha Courtès, Mayor of Bangangté, Cameroon and President of the Network for Locally Elected Women of Africa (REFELA); Fatimetou Abdel Malick, Mayor of Tevragh Zeina.
ASPAC: Maimunah Mohd Sharif, Mayor of Penang Island; Mar-len Abigail Sombillo Binay, Mayor of Makati.
EUROPE: Catarina Vaz Pinto, Councilor for Culture, City of Lisbon.
LATAM: María Claudia López, Secretary for Culture, City of Bogotá; Luisiana Toledo Quiros, Deputy Mayor of Escazú
MEWA: Sibel Uyar, Mayor of Urla
Furthermore, ahead of the G7 Summit to take place in Canada in 2018, UCLG called upon G7 leaders to reaffirm their commitment to promoting women’s participation in policy making at local level and make efforts to improve data on the proportion of seats held by women in local governments at country level.
[Read the declaration: Support for Women’s Political Participation at Local Level]
UCLG Statement before the One Planet Summit 2017
Following recommendation by the Policy Council on Resilience, UCLG members welcomed the initiative presented by Ronan Dantec to celebrate the One Planet Summit on the occasion of the second anniversary of the Paris Agreement, and to highlight the need to enhance commitments from all actors, as well to pay particular attention to the financing of initiatives to fight Climate Change.
UCLG members called on networks to continue fostering solidarity among cities and local and regional governments, and to consolidate work within the framework of the Global Taskforce, as a reference mechanism for action as a constituency.
Motion on the Status of Jerusalem
In the context of crisis in the Middle East, the World Organization reaffirmed its attachment to the status of Jerusalem, defined according to the international law, and that no decision should be taken unilaterally on this topic. Members called for a global solution to be found.
Hangzhou statement on the occasion of International Anti Corruption Day
The World Council further made a pledge to foster transparency, accountability and open government, and fight corruption.
Following a proposal by the Federation of Spanish Municipalities and Provinces on anti-corruption day, UCLG local leaders endorsed a motion to promote the Hangzhou statement stressing their commitment to fight corruption and promote transparency in governance and public policies.
[Read the full declaration: Hangzhou Statement on the occasion of the International Anti-corruption Day]
Next UCLG gatherings
The next UCLG Retreat will take place in Barcelona from 22 to 26 January 2018.
The next Executive Bureau will be hosted by the City of Strasbourg from 23 to 26 May 2018 and the next World Council will be held by the City of Madrid in 2018, in conjunction with the World Forum on Urban Violence.
It was agreed that for the year 2019, the third UCLG Culture Summit will be held in the City of Buenos Aires. The UCLG World Secretariat was mandated to explore the UCLG Executive be held in conjunction with the Summit. The World Council invited the City of Zhengzhou to organize the 2020 World Council.
Finally, it was decided that the 6th UCLG World Congress, the largest gathering of local and regional governments in the world, will be organized jointly by the South African Association of Local Governments and the eThekwini Municipality - City of Durban in 2019.
See you soon Strasbourg!
For more information:
- Follow the latest news on Twitter with #UCLGMeets and #Local4Action
- See photos of December 8 and 9 meetings on Flickr
Please credit @UCLG/Hangzhou when using these photos