New York, Dec 4 — The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) signed a new enhanced collaborative framework today, to ensure that support to countries and cities is aligned with their needs to better respond to future crises and recover from COVID-19. The new joint framework reiterates that urbanization is a transformative force that, if properly harnessed, can help countries and cities overcome major development challenges and make progress towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

Under the new partnership framework, the five key areas of focus will be to: support countries to develop  National Urban Policies (NUPs); help national and local governments develop effective and innovative financing frameworks to deliver local development agendas and ensure cities’ vital role in national economies; strengthen countries’ and cities’ capacity to fulfil climate action commitments; help adopt integrated approaches to strengthen urban resilience and pursue innovative digital technologies for people-centred smart cities.

The Executive Director of UN-Habitat Maimunah Mohd Sharif stated: “The areas of focus within this collaboration respond to the 2030 Agenda, the Paris Agreement and the New Urban Agenda adopted in 2016, and the current need to support countries and cities with their COVID-19 response and recovery. It will allow us to leverage our respective capacities as a contribution to the Decade of Action launched by the Secretary-General.”

UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner stated, “Cities have been on the frontline of the COVID-19 response. A green and inclusive recovery will not be viable without the direct engagement of cities. UN-Habitat and UNDP have enjoyed a longstanding partnership and now we have an opportunity to capitalize on each other’s strengths to move forward together in areas ranging from local economic development, to decentralized service delivery and supporting low-carbon resilient development.”

Currently, UN-Habitat is implementing 20 projects funded through UNDP, valued at USD $80 million. The majority of these joint-projects are in the Arab States region (Iraq, Lebanon and Syria) and Africa (Somalia, South Sudan, Ethiopia and Mozambique). Two-thirds of these projects focus on reconstruction, resilience and/or urban planning. The others deal with access to land, local governance and development in line with the UN reform, the collaboration will be translated into yearly targets, led by the regional and country offices, aiming for concrete impact where it matters most.


For more information:

UNDP- Sangita Khadka | email: | Tel: +1 212 906 5043

UN-Habitat-  Susannah Price | email: | Tel: +254 722719867