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Aug. 2 (NBD) -- The 2nd High-level International Forum on Sustainable Urban Development kicked off on Wednesday in southwest China's Chengdu, bringing together over 500 leaders and representatives from governments, cities, NGOs, institutes and private sector companies.

During the Forum, the World Bank signed and released a framework on sustainable urban development with the China Center for Urban Development (CCUD), promising to offer more intellectual support for China's urbanization drive.   

Bert Hofman, the World Bank's country director for China, Mongolia and Korea in the East Asia and Pacific Region, said China has played an exemplary role for the world in many ways, and the most critical task now is to push ahead human-oriented reform.

Bert Hofman, the World Bank's country director for China, Mongolia and Korea in the East Asia and Pacific Region

The idea is also echoed by Li Tie, chairman and chief economist of CCUD, saying the most fundamental purpose for urban development is to better serve the people. If a city cannot serve the people well, it can't be deemed as a sustainable city no matter how beautiful it is, Cong Zhongxiao, party secretary of the China National Children's Center added.

Qiu Baoxing, president of Chinese Society for Urban Studies, stressed that the competition and cooperation between large and small cities is critical for sustainable development of city clusters.  

With the advancement of globalization, collaborations among cities have risen to a global level. During the process, openness, cooperation and comprehensiveness are shared characteristics in the cooperation among cities all over the world.

For example, under the Belt and Road Initiative, a new and comprehensive opening-up plan takes shape in Sichuan province. For an all-round expansion, the strategy of "going southwards" is the first step, which starts from Chengdu and passes through Chongqing, Guizhou, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, all the way to Singapore and South Asian regions. 

Yang Weimin, Standing Committee member, the 13th National Committee of the CPPCC, acknowledged problems arising from urbanization and policy implementation. Yang told NBD in an interview that household registration system, land ownership system, social security and medical insurance system, and education system all have room for improvement. People living in the city and rural areas should share a same social security and healthcare system.

 

Email: tanyuhan@nbd.com.cn