The Urban 20 (U20) Mayoral Summit was inaugurated by Shri Bhupendrabhai Patel, Hon’ble Chief Minister of Gujarat, and Shri Kaushal Kishore, Hon’ble Minister of State for Housing and Urban Affairs. Speaking of the State’s rich history of urbanization dating back to the Indus Valley Civilization, Shri Patel highlighted forward-looking urban initiatives being implemented in the State.
Shri Kaushal Kishore shared the key highlights of some of the policies and programmes initiated by the Government of India to promote green development, including the LIFE mission, promotion of renewable energy, policies on e-mobility and missions like Housing for All, Swachh Bharat Mission etc.
Ahmedabad, serving as the chair for the sixth U20 cycle, has brought together more than hundred and forty foreign city leaders from over 60 sixty cities across the G20 countries, seventy plus national and international speakers to deliberate on issues that affect urban areas and address challenges in achieving sustainable urban development. The Summit also saw the participation of over one hundred Indian delegates from more than thirty cities.
Shri Manoj Joshi, Secretary, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs spoke about the rapid pace of urbanization in India, where urban population is expected to increase from the current 450 million to about 800 million by 2050. Shri Joshi highlighted the need for building capacities and adequate finances to deal with the impact of climate change.
The Hon’ble Mayor of Ahmedabad Shri Kiritkumar J. Parmar welcomed the delegates and emphasized the need for an action-oriented agenda to ensure sustainable and equitable urban development through the outcome document of U20 deliberations- the Communiqué.
Shri Abhay Thakur, Sous Sherpa of G20, highlighted the need for private investment in urban initiatives and reiterated the urgency to work for innovative solutions to address the consequences of rapid urban growth, such as the lack of affordable housing and access to basic services. Shri Thakur also stressed the importance of preserving cultural heritage and promoting sustainable development while reaffirming the Indian government’s commitment to inclusive governance and innovation.
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