The sixth session of the World Urban Forum held by U.N.-Habitat has kicked off with the participation of 114 countries including 12 Arab states in Naples, Italy. The first day of the forum started with the Saudi worksheet concerning the situation of urban development in the kingdom.
The Saudi Minister of Municipal Affairs, HRH Prince Mansour bin Meteb bin Abdul Aziz said that “the importance of this forum is that it tackles a very interesting subject which is the future of cities. Of late Saudi Arabia has witnessed a migration of people from rural areas to cities. The expansion of cities requires an increase in economic, social and environmental services.
So we are looking forward to benefit from other countries’ experiences and share the Saudi experience for other countries to benefit as well.”
Gulf countries have also participated in the forum by sending a government delegation from each country along with holding an exhibition on Bahrain’s Kingdom which is the biggest Arab exhibition.
Bahraini Prime Minister’s Court Sheikh Hussam bin Isa Al Khalifa said that “Bahrain’s participation this year reflects what the kingdom has been doing to address the goals of U.N. organizations in terms of urban and human development. I thank God that we were able to draw a picture of our achievements.”
On the sidelines of the forum, the organizers announced that a mini summit will be held in Morocco for the leading 20 countries on how to eradicate illegal settlements.
“In November end this year, Morocco will host an international meeting under the patronage of U.N. Habitat,” said Nabil Bin Abdullah, the Moroccan Minister of habitat. He added that “the conference will gather 20 countries who were pioneers in eradicating random settlements.”
The World Urban Forum for sustainable human development called participants to benefit from the Gulf states’ experience in developing their countries, underlining that the Gulf experience was a real inspiration.