After three days of intense debates and exchanges during the World Summit of Local and Regional leaders that was held in Mexico from 17th to the 20th November 2010, the members of United Cities and Local Governments and their partners have sent a strong signal to the international community by signing a Manifesto for the City of 2030 that shapes the City that mayors want for tomorrow.
This World Summit for Local and Regional Leaders also saw the renewal of the Presidential team and of the governing bodies of United Cities and Local Governments. Founded in 2004, UCLG enters in a new period, with the election of Kadir Topbas, Mayor of Istanbul, as the new President of the World Organisation. Accompanying the Mayor of Istanbul, as Co-Presidents were elected Antonio Costa of Lisbon, Portugal; Johnny Araya of San Jose de Costa Rica; Wan Qingliang of Guangzhou, China; Muchadeyi Masunda of Harare, Zimbabwe: and Ilsur Metsin of Kazan, Russian Federation. Tel Ellis, Mayor of Bluffton, Indiana, USA, was ratified as Treasurer.
Mayor Topbas expressed the great honour that becoming the UCLG President represented for him and stressed the collegial character of the Presidency team as well as his commitment to work towards the enlargement of UCLG.
At a time where our world becomes more and more urban and where intermediate and small cities will grow tremendously in the next years, the local and regional leaders have recalled that cities, whatever their size is, are all facing similar challenges. In their Manifesto for the City 2030, they established their vision for the urban future, insisting on the necessity to build an « inclusive City », together with its population, whatever their origins, their ages and gender. A City that integrates at all levels of governance to be at the closest of the needs of the citizens, a city that fully cooperates with its regional and rural metropolitan environment. A city that is mobile, respecting the environment and endowed with an efficient public service and using renewable energies as well as non-polluting technologies.
Adding to the Manifesto for the City of 2010, the mayors and representatives of the regions and local governments´ association have agreed on a Final Declaration that sums up 25 recommendations. These include that any reduction in local finances should take account of demographic and other cost pressures, and should be phased to enable proper planning to protect front-line services. Local representatives have also called all governments to complete, strengthen and maintain effective laws and policies for democratic decentralization and local self-government.
As regards climate change, mayors and local representatives have affirmed their support to to the Mexico Pact and called national governments and the international community to work closely with them and to take bolder binding steps to prevent severely damaging climate change.
Finally, the City of Rabat, capital city of Morocco, was selected to host the next World Congress of UCLG in 2013.