Nairobi, 5 August 2016 – In preparation for the Habitat III conference to be held in Quito in October, the third session of the Preparatory Committee - PrepCom3 - closed with strong progress towards the adoption of the New Urban Agenda.

In three intensive days of negotiations in Surabaya, Indonesia, delegates from member states recognized the importance of sustainable urbanization and discussed the ways in which it could influence Agenda 2030 and the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.

A total of 4,248 participants from 142 different countries were registered during the three day meeting reflecting the importance of the discussions at PrepCom3 leading up to Habitat III.

In his closing remarks, Dr Joan Clos, UN-Habitat Executive Director and Secretary-General of the Habitat III conference said: “We thank the city of Surabaya and the country of Indonesia for their great hospitality and a magnificent welcoming.  The cooperation and mutual spirit with the local government of Surabaya, its Mayor and with the Ministry of Public Works and Housing provided a solid ground for the intense work done here.”

The final stretch to the NUA

In 66 parallel and side events, United Nations member states, stakeholders, representatives from intergovernmental organisations, local and regional governments and grassroots organisations - including women and youth groups, slumdwellers' organisations and the informal sector - discussed how a new model of urban development would be able to integrate all facets of economically, socially and environmentally sustainable development.

With more than 50 per cent of the world’s population currently residing in cities and this expected to grow significantly over the next few decades, many of the current challenges facing us – such as climate change, migration, social exclusion and security – are inherently urban issues.

With strong links to the Sustainable Development Goals, encompassing development issues beyond those outlined in SDG11 (to make cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable), the New Urban Agenda provides a unique opportunity to address these in a holistic and innovative way.

“All governments and stakeholders involved in the Habitat III process will work intensively over the coming months to secure a successful adoption of the New Urban Agenda in October”, said Dr. Clos.