On December 7, 2018, the Global Mayors’ Forum & 2018 Urban Innovation Conference and the 4th Edition of Guangzhou Award kicked off in Guangzhou. More than 700 guests and representatives from 105 cities and local governments in 39 countries attended the opening ceremony and Wen Guohui, mayor of Guangzhou, chaired the opening ceremony.
He Wei, Vice-Chairman of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) National Committee, said in his speech that, in the face of such problems as unbalanced, inadequate and uncoordinated development, we need to achieve transformation and development through our reform and opening-up, promote joint development through mutual exchanges and cooperation, and facilitate the building of a community of human destiny through a mechanism based on extensive consultation, joint construction and shared benefits.
In her video remarks, Maimunah Mohd Sharif, United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director of UN-Habitat, said that UN-Habitat strongly advocates making cities safe, inclusive, resilient and sustainable and believed that the Global Mayors’ Forum would encourage in-depth dialogue among cities.
Ma Xingrui, Governor of Guangdong, said that Guangdong would participate more actively in the exchanges and cooperation of global urban governance innovation, and work together with the counterparts to discuss good governance practices, build cooperation platforms and share development achievements.
Song Jingwu, Vice President of the Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries (CPAFFC), said that the Global Mayors’ Forum is established with the purpose of further implementing the United Nations’ SDGs and the New Urban Agenda, and encouraging cities worldwide to participate in global governance and to contribute insights to a more fair, sound and balanced global governance mechanism.
Emilia Saiz, UCLG Secretary-General, and Rudi Vervoort, Representative of the World Association of Major Metropolises (METROPOLIS), Minister President of Brussels Capital Region, Belgium, addressed the opening ceremony and expressed their hopes for cities around the world to have more mutual exchanges and cooperation and share experiences in urban governance.
The theme of the forum is titled Global Openness and Inclusive Innovation. Five cities are awarded as the winning cities of the 4th Edition of Guangzhou Award: Milan of Italy, Guadalajara of Mexico, Wuhan of China, Mezitili of Turkey and New York City of the United States. Surabaya of Indonesia received the largest number of votes to win the Online Popular City. The Guangzhou Declaration at the Global Mayors’ Forum is also released.