Dubai, 17 October 2019—In efforts towards deepening cooperation with housing ministers from the Arab world, UN-Habitat Deputy Executive Director Victor Kisob recently attended The Third Arab Ministerial Forum for Housing and Urban Development (AMFHUD III) held there.

Mr. Kisob attended the Third Arab Forum for Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (AMFHUDIII), which was hosted by the United Arab Emirates in cooperation with the Ministerial Council for Housing and Construction of the Arab League and the Regional Office of Arab States of UN-Habitat. The event saw the participation and attendance of more than 15 Arab ministers, high-level executives and key stakeholders, from the private and public sector, it will be the largest Arab gathering dedicated to tackle the challenges and shape the future of housing and urban development.

He also attended the 36th session of the Arab Ministerial Council for Housing and Construction, organized by the Ministry of Infrastructure Development and the Sheikh Zayed Housing Programme of UAE, in collaboration with the Council of Arab Ministers of Housing and Construction of the League of Arab States and UN-Habitat.

The three-day forum discussed topics and issues that serve the future in the fields of housing and development, where the discussions revolve around three main questions of inclusive cities for happiness and quality of life, sustainability in housing and urban development, as well as the role of the private sector and NGOs in supporting government housing.

UN-Habitat deepens cooperation with Arab Ministers for Housing
UN-Habitat Deputy Executive Director, Victor Kisob addressing the Third Arab Ministerial Forum for Housing and Urban Development (AMFHUD III)

Addressing the meeting, Mr. Kisob hailed the key role played by the League of Arab States in stimulating the member countries towards sustainable urban development.

"I would also like to pay tribute to the new low-income housing initiatives in the UAE and Bahrain, the planned expansion of cities in Egypt and Saudi Arabia, the emergence of several smart Arab cities and the innovative approaches adopted to rebuild better cities."

Mr. Kisob pointed out that the Arab countries have extraordinary potential to become a role model in the new urban agenda and in the implementation of the SDGs through the exchange of experiences, policies and legislation. He added that the adoption of the Arab Regional Strategy for Housing and Urban Development 2030 and its implementation plan is an extremely important commitment.

AMFHUD has been established as a biannual regional consultative platform on housing and sustainable urban development issues hosted by one of the Arab countries and organized in partnership with the Ministerial Council for Housing and Construction of the Arab League, with relevant Ministries of the Arab member states and the technical support of UN-HABITAT’s Regional Office for Arab States (ROAS).

The forum consisted of a series of technical sessions focused on specific and comprehensive themes organized in coordination with the Arab countries and bringing together specialists in the field of housing and urban development, and resulted in the endorsement of “Dubai Declaration” by the Arab Ministerial Council for Housing and Construction with a set of recommendations and initiatives for cooperation towards strengthening innovation and integrated territorial development in the Arab region.