Approximately 300 mayors, representatives of local governments and local government associations from all ASEAN member states gathered and discussed about local actions for sustainable and inclusive growth in the 5thASEAN Mayors Forum entitled “Driving Local Actions for Sustainable and Inclusive Growth held in Bangkok, Thailand, 26-28 August 2019. The United Cities and Local Governments Asia-Pacific (UCLG ASPAC) Secretariat, Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA), the United Nations Economic Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN ESCAP) jointly organised the event with support from the European Union (EU).
The Minister of Interior, Kingdom of Thailand, Anupong Paochinda, graced the event with his opening remarks following the welcome remarks from the Governor of Bangkok, Aswin Kwanmuang, the Secretary General of UCLG ASPAC, Bernadia Tjandradewi, the Executive Secretary of UNESCAP, Armida Alisjahbana and the Ambassador of EU to Thailand, Pirkka Tapiola.
Under the theme Driving Local Actions for Sustainable and Inclusive Growth, the discussions were be framed by sub-themes: Digital ASEAN (future-oriented), Seamless ASEAN (enhanced connectivity), and Sustainable ASEAN (sustainability in all dimensions).
International Urban Cooperation (IUC) Asia Helpdesk with support from the EU organised a networking event entitled “A Special Briefing Session for Mayors: Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy (GCoM)” aiming at encouraging the mayors to join the GCoM and obtain the benefits for their cities.
The Secretary General of UCLG ASPAC, Benardia Tjandradewi, opened the session attended by approximately 40 mayors and representative of local governments and international organizations, with an explanation about GCoM, the UCLG ASPAC’s role as the GCoM Secretariat for South East Asia, its background, implementation and how to join. The Lead Expert Climate Action, IUC Asia, Piero Remitti, presented how IUC Asia supported GCoM activities. Regional Director for Southeast Asia and Oceania, C40 Cities, Milaq San Jose Ballesteros, explained how C40 supported cities in combating climate change.
The session also showcased the city’s experience as one of the GCoM member cities. The Deputy Mayor of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Datuk Mahadi bin Che Ngah, presented the city’s experience after signing commitment to the GCoM stating now the city have better knowledge to prepare emission inventory report to identify mitigation plans and develop adaptation actions to tackle climate change. Also from the GCoM they were exposed to various new initiatives and best practices from European cities.
The EU Ambassador for Thailand, H.E. Mr. Pirkka Tapiola, graced the closing of the session with his remarks. He encouraged the participants in the session to join the GCoM and actively participate in the activities. He also mentioned that the EU stood ready to support city programs and activities in line with the EU strategy in climate change and energy.