ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi will preside over the closing session of the first-ever three-day international moot on the role of local governments in the implementation of sustainable development goals (SDGs).
To be held in the federal capital from April 10-12, the international conference is likely to be attended by the heads of district governments from across Pakistan and abroad, sources in Prime Minister Office told The Express Tribune.
PM Abbasi, who returned to the capital on Saturday after a daylong visit to Kabul, would visit China before participating in the closing session of the moot on local governments and SDGs, said the PM Office sources.
In China, Abbasi is expected to attend the preliminary session of Boao Forum for Asia (BFA) being held in Hainan from April 8 to 11.
For the local governments moot in Islamabad, all the 121 heads of district governments – mayors, chairmen, chairpersons and nazims – in the four provinces and the Islamabad Capital Territory have confirmed their participation.
The mayors of Jakarta (Indonesia), Hangzou (China), Tai pie (Taiwan), Jeju (Korea), Kazan (Russia) and Fuzho (China) are also attending the conference. Additionally, 60 other delegates from over a dozen countries including England, Turkey, China, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Nepal and Afghanistan will also be a part of the moot.
Meanwhile, senior officials of UN agencies, envoys of the European Union and other regional and international cooperation agencies are scheduled to attend the moot.
The conference titled “Think Globally, Act Locally – SDGs Implementation through Local Governments,” is being organised by the United Cities and Local Government – Asia Pacific (UCLG-ASPAC) in collaboration with the Local Councils Associations of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) and Punjab.
The moot is supported by Deutsche Gesellschaftfür Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), GmbH and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
Likewise, the conference will discuss the role of local governments in responding to Agenda 2030 and the challenges local governments face in the implementation, monitoring and financing the 17 SDGs.
The UCLG-ASPAC is the only local government organisation recognised by the United Nations. It nominates 10 out of 20 members of the UN Advisory Committee of local authorities, the first formal advisory body of local authorities affiliated to the UN.
The Local Councils Associations of K-P and Punjab are independent elected representative bodies of all local councils in their respective provinces. Established in 2008 and 2006 respectively, the associations of K-P and Punjab are independent bodies formed under the Societies Act 1860.
The Local Councils Association of K-P is a representative body of around 42,858 local government representatives including 7,342 female whereas the Local Councils Association of Punjab has as many as 58,000 local government representatives as its members.