Mehmet Duman, UCLG-MEWA Secretary General, attended an online panel entitled “Realizing Positive Economic Development in Towns and Small Cities” within the context of Habitat in Towns: Collingwood World Summit as a speaker on 1 September 2020.
Speaking at the Summit organized on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the United Nations, Secretary General Duman stated that the biggest consequence of COVID-19 is that our societies very painfully showed their vulnerability to the whole world in every area. Duman also pointed out that the solution to vulnerability is to develop resilient communities and cities in all fields.
Stressing the point that the distribution of capital, employment and economic activities rather than concentrating them in a certain field is vital for sustainability, UCLG-MEWA Secretary General also highlighted the importance of the role of intermediary cities in this regard. He further added that the distribution of economic activities and benefiting from intermediary cities should move higher on national and international agendas, and underlined the importance of cooperation between local and central governments in this context.
Duman said that in order to make economy more resilient, we first need to make cities hosting economic activities more resilient, and pointed out the need for development of a global consultation on the role of intermediary cities. He added that as UCLG-MEWA, they are working in coordination with the UCLG World Organization and its sections.
Secretary General Duman ended his speech by thanking the Town of Collingwood, UN-Habitat and Urban Economy Forum for co-hosting the Summit.