Kadir Topbaş, Mayor of Istanbul and President of UCLG, was in New York on 10 February at the High-Level Thematic Debate on Means of Implementation for a Transformative Post-2015 Development Agenda. At the invitation of the President of the General Assembly, he addressed Member States and High Level UN Representatives on behalf of the Global Taskforce.
He was invited to be part of the panel on "The Role of Parliaments, Cities and Local Authorities in the implementation of the post-2015 development agenda". Answering the question of how to finance the sustainable development agenda, he pointed out that "reforms must be undertaken in many parts of the world in order to encourage, secure, and adapt funding to the needs and capacities of local governments."
Mayor of Johannesburg, Parks Tau, was also invited to address the panel. The contributions of both mayors to the discussions have been praised by the President of the General Assembly and have received very positive feedback from the participants.
Invited to speak on behalf of local and regional authorities in a high level event on "The Future of Cities: An Integrated Approach to Urban Problems", President Topbaş highlighted the "need to draw a clear picture of the results, achievements and unfinished business of the Habitat II Agenda, paying particular attention to the implementation of decentralization around the world, the access to basic services, the financing of sub-national authorities and infrastructures, and the development of territorial cohesion."