Committed to Sustainable Cities and Human Settlements for All

In Special Consultative Status with ECOSOC






    2015 is a landmark year when the world received a clear direction from the world leaders through the United Nations for a transformative change towards sustainable development. Only a month ago, the United Nations Sustainable Development Summit adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. It  highlighted that: “This Agenda is a plan of action for people, planet and prosperity……we pledge that no one will be left behind. ” and asserted that “The 17 Sustainable Development Goals and 169 targets will stimulate action over the next fifteen years in areas of critical importance for humanity and the planet.” The Goal 11 focused on the habitat agenda and committed to “making cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable”.

    2015 is also a critical year for the preparation of the United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (Habitat III) to be held from 17 to 20 October 2016 in Quito, Ecuador leading to the adoption of New Urban Agenda. Against this background of special significance, the 10th Global Forum on Human Settlements and 10th Anniversary of GFHS (GFHS - X)  both focused on the relevant and related issues  in advancing sustainable city and sustainable urbanization as well as observing the “World Cities Day 2015 at the headquarters of the United Nations in New York on 29 and 30 October 2015. The gathering was one of the very first events bringing partners from various backgrounds and handling various responsibilities exchanged and shared information and ideas for the realization of the SDGs and for the development of the New Urban Agenda. With cities increasingly in the spotlight on the international stage, urban planning and development has become a critical issue in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

    GFHS - X brought together around 300 participants, including Ambassadors and diplomats representing UN Member States, officials representing various entities of the UN system, recognized experts, leading policy and decision makers from national and local governments, business leaders, representatives of various international organizations, NGOs and financial institutions. Through their participation and contribution, we have further realized that urban growth at all costs needs not be our destination.. The inevitable road we have to take is to make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable in support of sustainable urbanization and ecological civilization for people and planet.

     We therefore call for global actions:

    1. To work tirelessly for the full and effective implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development; to actively disseminate information on SDGs and innovatively educate the public particularly the youth and children; to guide the public to cultivate the values and cultures of sustainability and engage in achieving the city we need.

    2. To develop or revise overarching strategy for the city sustainable management by integrating SDGs, the New Urban Agenda as well as the aspirations of residents and stakeholders through relevant participatory process, and establish laws and policies to ensure effective implementation.

    3. To foster a culture of inclusiveness and integrate equity and equality into the urban development policies and agenda, especially to pay attention to the needs of women and children in  our rapidly urbanizing world, protecting them from violence, abuse, exploitation,  neglect and discrimination; to provide all  equal access to housing, education, health care including mental health, sanitation, services for the elderly and disabled, recreational facilities and other services public welfare and well-being.

    4. To carry out necessary political reforms and effective governance structure, inspire creativity and create a development model that is inclusive, innovative, dynamic and competitive; to engage in important initiatives, such as "One Belt and One Road Initiative" by China, enhancing interconnectivity of hard and soft infrastructure and increasing opportunities for cooperation.

    5. To provide affordable and adequate housing for all; to ensure that the government plays a leading role in social housing supply while guiding the responsible development of the housing market and infrastructure..

    6. To undertake long-term and scientific planning of city, encourage innovative and passive building design, and ensure effective implementation; to support and foster the emergence of more compact, accessible, connected and mixed urban forms by controlling urban sprawl and fragmentation.

    7. To pursue harmonious coexistence between human and nature by promoting sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems and halting biodiversity loss; to increase ratio of green space and build livable communities.

    8. To commit to developing and implementing low-carbon and resource efficient urban development strategies, improving the efficiency of traditional energy source, adopting relevant criteria and standards, prioritizing policies and investments in public, non-motorized and low-emission transport, building efficiency, renewable energy and efficient waste management.

    9. To better understand resources flows in the urban metabolism and to use knowledge of resource flows from a consumption and production perspective, especially to change the pattern of "Products in Trash out" in current city operation and reduce waste from the source, notably through a circular economy approach, whilst advocating green, moderate and healthy life style.

    10. To build up city resilience through infrastructures and resource management to better deal with chronic stresses and acute shocks due to climate change, natural calamity, and ecosystems degradation; to recommend the construction of integrated underground pipe lines and adopt the concept of low impact development.

    11.   To develop interconnected greener cities by taking the momentum of internet and big data revolution and investing in building information infrastructure for making cities smarter and more efficient while promoting industry transformation and upgrading.

    12. To innovate and diversify financing mechanism in support of adequate green infrastructure and public services notably through Public-Private Partnership; to effectively guard against risk from local-government debts.

    13.  To develop and implement relevant laws and policies to promote sustainable buildings and realize construction industrialization, while optimizing the building material supply chain.

    14.   To protect traditional culture and heritage and to attach great importance to the conservation and development of historical town centers and ancient towns and villages, by revitalizing and re-naturalizing them in a participatory manner.

    15. To enhance rural-urban connectivity to promote the coordinated development of urban and rural areas; to encourage sustainable agriculture opportunities in rural areas that help create sustainable livelihoods.

    16. To develop sustainable tourism projects that serve as a vehicle to alleviate poverty, enhance indigenous settlements and protect biodiversity, increasing vitality of rural areas which plays a critical role in reducing migration to cities.

    17. To address the challenges, and seize the opportunities, in the coastal cities and human settlements, aiming at achieving the Goal 11 and Goal 14 and their respective targets  as in the 2030 Agenda through mutually reinforcing mitigation, adaptation or resilience actions*




*Goal 14. Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development