The regional kick-off workshop for the IKI regional project “Urban-Act: Integrated Urban Climate Action for Low-Carbon & Resilient Cities” was successfully held in Bangkok from 20 to 24 March 2023. The workshop was hosted by Urban-Act secretary and GIZ Thailand office with almost 70 participates. Apart from GIZ staff from Germany and five implementing countries (China, India, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Thailand), the representatives from UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), United Cities and Local Governments Asia- Pacific (UCLG-ASPCAC), Technical University Dortmund, University of Stuttgart, as well as implementation partners from partner countries were in attendance. The workshop aimed to facilitate exchanges between implementing partners and create synergies among all stakeholder’s activities at regional and country-level. This regional project strives to promote low-carbon and resilient urban development in India, the Philippines, Thailand, China, and Indonesia, while also supporting the implementation of NDCs and the 2030 Agenda. China’s Component of the project should focus on improving vertical integration of urban spatial planning while considering climate change aspects. Additionally, sharing best practices and lesson learnt with other participating countries would help to amplify the project’s impacts in the region.
During this workshop, Ms. Fang Hou, Deputy Director of the Division of International Cooperation and Exchange, Department of Climate Change of Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE), expressed China’s endorsement of the project in her video speech by highlighting the National Strategy for Adapting to Climate Change 2035. The newest National Strategy emphasised adaptable urban spatial planning that takes the aspect of climate change into account, which highly resonated with the Urban-Act project objectives. This important policy would support Urban-Act China Component to achieve successful ministerial cooperation between MEE and Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) in China. As a representative from another Chinese political partner, MNR of China, Mr. Yanming Kao, Deputy Division Director of Bureau of Territorial and Spatial Planning, participated in the workshop virtually and expressed MNR’s strong support for the initiative. He also conveyed MNR’s willingness to collaborate with regional and other country partners to achieve the project objectives.
Overall, this regional kick-off workshop was a resounding success. It enabled key stakeholders to come together and collaborate effectively. All participating parties have agreed on maximising the project’s impacts in the targeted region. In addition, with the strong support of the corresponding political partners and consortium partners at regional and country levels, the project team is fully confident and well-positioned to achieve its objectives in the upcoming four years.