EU’s WORLD CITIES PROJECT PAIRS MAKASSAR AND SEMARANG WITH SEVILLA AND ZAGREB
TO SHARE BEST PRACTICES AND DEVELOP PILOT PROJECTS IN SUSTAINABLE URBANISATION
Jakarta, 22.05.2017: Two Indonesian cities – Makassar and Semarang – are being paired with two European top cities – Sevilla (Spain) and Zagreb (Croatia) – under the World Cities project. This European Union (EU) initiative – supported by the European Parliament – promotes long-term working relations between cities of the EU and cities in other countries, such as Indonesia, with whom we share a strategic partnership.
The overall aim of the project is to promote better urban policy and thereby improve the quality of life in participating cities. The cooperation agenda with Indonesia started with the identification of pilot cities and goes on with the development of concrete actions for implementation. This covers, for example, urban innovation (the smart city) and green technologies (energy efficiency, low carbon development). Actions are designed to increase so-called ‘triple-helix cooperation’ between governments, research and business. World Cities will also create opportunities for business and new jobs while pursuing the sustainable development of the cities involved.
The initiative was launched at the Kick-Off Meeting held in Jakarta today in the presence of Charles-Michel Geurts, Deputy Head of the EU Delegation to Indonesia and Brunei Darussalam, 10 European city delegates and senior officials of the local authorities from Makassar and Semarang. Several EU Member States representatives participated at a reception hosted by the EU Delegation after the kick-off event in the same venue.
This programme will provide a unique opportunity to the Indonesian cities to collaborate and learn from the experiences of South Korea, South Africa, Australia and Vietnam, who are the other country partners for the EU for the World Cities project.
EU’s Delegation Deputy Head Mr. Geurts referred to the high level of urbanisation in the EU and to the unique pace of Indonesian urbanisation, from 15% in the 1950s to nearly 60% currently. This rapid urbanisation brings along the challenge of job creation and preservation of cultural heritage. Particularly Indonesian cities offer best practices for the co-existance of social and cultural values. Mr. Guerts referred to the importance of decentralised city-to-city cooperation as a mean to boost sustainable urban development by achieving win-win solutions. Additionally Mr Geurts referred to the newly launched Global Covenant of Mayors and the International Urban Cooperation (IUC) programme as a mean to support its implementation in Indonesia.
Dr. Ronald Hall, Principal Advisor at the Directorate General for Regional and Urban Policy of the Eurpean Commission, delivered a key-note speech via video-conference. Dr Hall said “In both, Australia and the EU, we realise that our policies for economic and social development will be successful only if they are successful in our cities. This is why it is important that we share our knowledge and experience on urban policy, and our examples of good practice in fields such as urban transport, energy efficiency, urban-rural relations and good urban governance. EU regional and urban policy invests over 50 billion euros annually in supporting European regions and cities and we, on our side, are keen to share the results of this experience. Our aim is to support decentralised cooperation between EU and Australian cities in an effort to address more effectively the major urbanisation challenges of the 21st century”.
Additionally, Dr Hall spoke of the new EU Urban agenda in accordance with the UN Habitat III and its continuous effort to further promote the international outreach of EU’s urban agenda, especially with the Indonesian partners.
The launch event:
The day-long launch event served to further strengthen the ties between EU and Indonesia, and helped develop the way forward for EU-Indonesia cooperation on sustainable urban development.
In the conference, over 20 representatives from the EU and Indonesian cities focused on the way forward regarding several aspects of sustainable urban development, including smart city (transportation, ICT, safety, big data), urban economy (innovation, start-ups), climate change (low-carbon, green energy, resilience) and urban regeneration (cultural heritage, green spaces, affordable housing).
The conference was attended by representatives from the national and local governments, private sector, non-governmental organisations, universities and other stakeholders.
EU delegates then started a visit to the cities of Makassar and Semarang during the period 23-26 May, in which they are meeting local authorities in order to jointly elaborate the cooperation agenda and the pilot projects.
Charles-Michel Geurts, Deputy Head of the EU Delegation to Indonesia and Brunei Darussalam
Dr. Ronald Hall’s video key-note speech.
Introduction of Makassar by Mr Andii Zulfrita Dianta, Developmnet and Planning Board, Makassar City
Introduction of Sevilla by Darío MAURIÑO, Head of Seville Metropolitan Area at EMASESA (Municipal Water Company)
Introduction of Zagreb by Mrs. Jelena MARKOVIĆ, Office for EU Programmes and Projects, City of Zagreb
Remarks by Mrs. Sri Indah WIBI NASTITI, Director of Program Development and Advocacy at APEKSI
Reception in the afternoon hosted by the EU Delegation to Indonesia
Press coverage (external link):