New Delhi, December 16:
A Delhi Declaration was announced at the closing of the four-day Asia Pacific Ministerial Conference on Housing and Human Settlement today, with a historic commitment to support the ever-growing number of the urban poor in the region.
The minister of state for housing and urban poverty of India Kumari Selja announced the declaration during the closing ceremony of the conference.
The document, an outcome of the conference of the housing ministers from around 35 countries of the region, among others, has promised to support relief and rehabilitation of shelter and human settlement development in post-conflict and post-disaster situations.
The participating ministers, including the Minister for Physical Planning and Works Gopal Man Shrestha from Nepal, have shown commitment to formulate plans and policies in the near future to proceed in accordance with the Delhi Declaration.
The Asia Pacific Region is emerging as a major contributor to the global urban transition, holding 61 per cent of the global population and 43 per cent of the world urban population.
The Delhi Declaration has decided to establish the Asia-Pacific Ministers’ Conference on Housing and Urban Development (AMPCHUD) as the consultative mechanism on the promotion of suitable development of housing and urban development in the region.
India has consented to work as the secretariat for it for the coming two years. The AMPCHUD, as guided by the “Enhanced Framework”, adopted today, will serve as a forum and network to discuss the urban challenge at the continental level as a basis for national, provincial and local level strategies and policies.
Addressing the closing event, Anna Kazumulo Tabaijuka, the undersecretary general of the UN, said: “Whether they live in the capital or a small island, the poor deserve the same security, development and rights as everyone else.”
[ KATHMANDU, DECEMBER 17, 2006, Poush 02, 2063]