21-23 May 2019 | YIWU – City leaders in Asia Pacific once again united voice and expressed their initiatives for fostering sustainable urben development in the first session of Executive Bureau Meeting 2019 held in conjunction with Dialogue on International Economic and Trade Cooperation under the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

The dialogue on international economy was held to promote the city of Yiwu which is known as the World’s Capital of Small Commodities. Through the dialogue, Yiwu expressed its commitment to play an active role in realising the vision of BRI. Yiwu provided a platform for participants to have discussion on how BRI can best complement their efforts to attain sustainable development outcomes, by exploring opportunities to expand trade areas, optimise trade structure, exchange innovative trade models, particularly in digital trade, and identify actions or cooperation to support the development of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). The dialogue was complemented with 2019 China Yiwu Imported Commodities Fair.

The meeting in Yiwu resulted to the adoption of Yiwu Initiative that highlights the importance of connectivity (intercity infrastructure, people-to-people exchanges, and culture), new model of investment and financing in cities.

Under the framework for better and future city development, city members of UCLG ASPAC also discussed their interest and preparation for the upcoming events in each sub-region.

Sub-Regional Updates

In the Executive Bureau Meeting 2019, the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (Thailand) discussed that they would be hosting the ASEAN Mayors Forum 2019 from 26 to 28 August 2019. Representative of the Southwest Asia sub-region reported that the SAARC Position Paper which has been endorsed by the Committee in the previous meeting was already proposed to the Prime Minister of Nepal and would further been discussed with SAARC Secretariat. From East Asia sub-region, City of Jinan with support from Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries (CPAFFC) would like to explore the need to set up the North East Asia Sub-Region. For this initiative, discussions with members in this sub-region were required. Co-President of UCLG ASPAC, President of LGNZ and Dunedin Mayor Dave Cull mentioned that the proposal to hold the UCLG ASPAC Executive Committee meeting 2020 in his country will be discussed further with LGNZ’s members.

Committee Initiatives

City of Guangzhou (China) expressed their interest to chair the Standing Committee on Women in Local Governments. It was agreed that the position is also open to other cities with similar interest. The chair will be decided during the UCLG ASPAC Council Meeting 2019 in Makati (Philippines). In relation to Committee initiatives, Executive Bureau members also received proposal from City of Goyang (South Korea) and Padang (Indonesia) for establishment of the SDGs Committee and from City of Jeonju (South Korea) for the Youth and Adolescent Committee. Acknowledging the positive initiative, President Tri Rismaharini requested the proposed cities to further explore the needs of such Committees’ establishment.

New Members

The Executive Bureau members approved the membership of Jember Regency, Korea Research Institute for Local Administration (KRILA), and Siping City. Representative of each new member received the certificate of their memberships.

Organisational Matters

Regarding the organisational matters, it was decided to extend the opportunity for members to host the 8th UCLG ASPAC Congress 2020 until August 2019. During the meeting, City of Jakarta (Indonesia) presented their intention to hold the Congress, followed by expression of interest from City of Zhengzhou (China) to host the event.

During the meeting, Executive Bureau members also agreed to support Daejeon as representative from Asia Pacific to host the UCLG World Congress in 2022.

UCLG ASPAC Secretariat Team thanks the City of Yiwu, CPAFFC, and all members for their active participation and contribution during the first session of 2019 Executive Bureau Meeting in Yiwu. The positive momentum from the meeting will become a solid foundation for cities and local governments in Asia Pacific to further develop together for the prosperity of the people in the region.

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