The 56th General Assembly of the Arab Towns Organization (ATO) took place in Amman on 24 and 25th June with the representation of cities coming from all countries in the region. The Secretary General of UCLG and UCLG MEWA were special guests and followed the discussions of the ATO Board showing progress of numerous committees.
Innovation for sustainability, the inclusion of youth - in particular around the development of smart cities - and the role of cities in implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) where many of the issues on the agenda. Hence, mobility and sustainable urban planning deserved special attention for the joint agenda of UCLG and ATO.
In the many meetings with the ATO leadership Emilia Saiz, Secretary General of UCLG highlighted the important role played by this organization as founding member of UCLG. Both parties expressed their keen interest in developing the collaboration and strong representation at the upcoming World Summit of Local and Regional Leaders and UCLG World Congress in Durban on 11-15 November 2019.
The Metropolitan City of Amman joined the Mobility Champion Community of UCLG highlighting that accessible and inclusive mobility was critical for the well being of citizens. The development of a sound public transportation system was presented as a critical priority for Amman. In this regard the Mayor of Amman, Yousef Shawarbeh highlighted that mobility and public transport are key to ensure security of women and men while living their city, and emphasized that sustainable development should be conceived as a service for the citizenship.