The Jakarta Post
Jakarta will host the New Cities Summit from June 9 to 11 this year, the first city in Asia to do so.
The annual New Cities Summit, held by the New Cities Foundation, is a conference at which regional leaders, decision-makers and businesspeople gather to discuss ways to develop cities.
This year marks the fourth New Cities Summit. Previously, the summit has been held in Dallas in the US in 2014, Sao Paulo in Brazil in 2013 and Paris in 2012.
New Cities Foundation chairman John Rossant said that Jakarta had been chosen because the city was one of the most dynamic cities in the world with one of the highest growth rates in Asia.
'This is the first time that we will conduct the summit in Asia. We feel very strongly that this is the time for Jakarta, which is one of the most dynamic cities in the world and one of the fastest growing in Asia,' Rossant told reporters after signing a memorandum of understanding with Jakarta Governor Basuki 'Ahok' Tjahaja Purnama at City Hall in Central Jakarta on Wednesday.
The summit could be a chance for leaders from Jakarta and other cities to share ideas on city governance and management, he said. Many cities, had similar problems with Jakarta in transportation, waste management, governance and housing.
'The governor previously said that there were many problems that existed in Jakarta and this could be an opportunity to overcome those problems. This summit can hopefully facilitate in sharing ideas in managing a city,' Rossant said.
He went on to say that the summit would have more than 500 participants from more than 50 cities.
Ahok said that he felt happy and honored to host the summit, adding that he would take the opportunity to learn from developed cities.
'Jakarta is a city late in development; we are behind compared with other cities. This summit will be a great opportunity for us to take notes from other countries, and we do not need to conduct unnecessary studies abroad to do so,' Ahok told reporters.
He added that he hoped to learn from the trials and errors of other cities. 'Hopefully we can learn from this summit,' he said.
The former East Belitung regent went on to say that the summit was also a way to introduce foreign tourists to Jakarta. 'It will be very beneficial for us because there will be delegates from more than 50 cities. We hope we can give a good impression,' he said.
In its website, the foundation states its mission as: '[...] to shape a better urban future for all by generating and scaling ideas and solutions through events, research and urban innovation projects'.
' JP/ Dewanti A. Wardhani