Khmernews

Consultative Meeting on Urbanization: Livability

Posted by khmernews on June 14, 2007

Opening remarks
Ms. Alice Levisay, Deputy Representative, UNFPA
Organized by the National Committee for Population and Development (NCPD) with support from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and UN Habitat

Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen

On behalf of UNFPA, I am pleased to be here this morning to open this consultative meeting on Urbanization. UNFPA is proud to support this dialogue on urban issues, and it is wonderful to see such a wide cross-section of Cambodia society here to discuss this issue. Participants include representatives from government, UN, NGOs, and donors, as well as from the private sector, academic institution, Municipal/Provincial Offices of Land Management, and Governor’s Offices.

The urban population of Cambodia is rapidly increasing, and is currently estimated at about 17%. While such urbanization can bring benefits, it can also bring increased needs and concerns, and these must be effectively addressed if the whole society is to benefit. Increased urban populations mean increased demands on urban housing, roads, infrastructure, food supplies, water, waste and sanitation systems, and can lead to concentrated poverty and increased violence. Urbanization also has particular affects on women, young people and children that must be considered and addressed.

Urbanization is a global as well as a local issue and one that many countries are facing. This year’s State of the World Population Report, Unleashing the Potential of Urban Growth, to be launched on 27 June, is an excellent source of up to date global information on these issues and we trust that you will find it useful.

We hope that the meeting today and the sharing of experiences will aid in the identification of practical and realistic Cambodian solutions, and expand communication and facilitate partnerships around these issues.

We would like to thank the NCPD for their efforts in coordinating this meeting, and we look forward to the presentations and discussions today; I am sure they will be interesting and thought-provoking.

Thank you for coming.

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