Mrs. Anna Tibaijuka receives the credentials from Mr. Hongbo Deng
The Government of the People’s Republic of China and UN-HABITAT have pledged to further strengthen the existing cooperation between them.
The pledge was made on Tuesday by the Executive Director of UN-HABITAT, Mrs. Anna Tibaijuka, and the new Permanent Representative of China to UN-HABITAT, Mr. Hongbo Deng, during the presentation of credentials by the envoy.
Mrs. Tibaijuka recalled that China has been a long-standing supporter of the programmes and activities of UN-HABITAT, which culminated in the country hosting the Fourth Session of the World Urban Forum in the city of Nanjing in 2008.
She also stated that next year the country would be hosting the World Expo in the city of Shanghai and noted that UH-HABITAT would be coordinating the participation of the entire United Nations system in the event.
She informed the envoy that China has a good best practices competition that promotes excellence in Chinese cities, and also feeds into UN-HABITAT awards, including the Dubai International Award for Best Practices to Improve the Living Environment.
Mrs. Tibaijuka informed Mr. Deng that many Chinese cities have been winners of the Dubai International since 2000. They include Chengdu in 2000 (for Comprehensive Revitalization of Urban Settlements); Guangzhou in 2002 (for Action Programme for Sustainable Guangzhou); Tangshan in 2004 (for Brownfield Remediation of the Tangshan Southern Coal Mining Area); and The New Qingpu Practice - Sustainable Construction of Ecology and Humanity in 2008 for Conservation of a historic Shanghai neighbourhood.
She noted that the local government was mobilizing various actors to capitalize on the 2010 World Expo to locally realize the goal of: “Better city, better life."
Mrs. Tibaijuka also stated that there were 18 partners from China that are accredited to UN-HABITAT and that these organizations have been in the forefront of human settlements development in many Asian countries. The organizations have been active in research, policy, contraction, publishing and education on issues of the built-up environment all across Asia. She said that organizations also encourage the education and maintenance of culture and cultural practices, environmental protection and the use of new technologies to sustain the environment.
Mrs. Tibaijuka also stated that UN-HABITAT had established cooperation with Chinese youth organizations, including the Nanjing Youth Federation and the All China Youth Federation. She informed the envoy that both organizations were very supportive during the Youth events at the World Urban Forum in Nanjing, China, in 2008.
She also noted that China’s capital city, Beijing, is the most equal city in the world and that the city is also inclusive. She congratulated Mr. Deng on his appointment and wished him a successful tenure.
Responding, Mr. Deng praised Mrs. Tibaijuka for her keen interest in China and for her sympathy visit to the victims of the earthquake in Sechuan Province of China in May 2008.
Mr. Deng emphasized that China greatly values its relationship with UN-HABITAT and told the Executive Director: “If there is anything we can do to enhance your participation in World Expo 2010, please let me know.”
He called for the continued the good relations between China and UN-HABITAT. Said he: “Let the good cooperation continue. We want good relations between us and UN-HABITAT.” The envoy expressed delight that there were many Chinese staff working in UN-HABITAT.
Mrs. Tibaijuka presented the envoy with some UN-HABITAT publications including the flagship “State of the World’s Cities Report,” which was launched in Nanjing, China, in 2008 as part of the activities for WUF4.