New York

12 October 2021

Secretary-General video message for “Bridge for Cities 2021”

Watch the video: https://s3.amazonaws.com/downloads2.unmultimedia.org/public/video/evergreen/MSG+SG+/SG+8+Oct+21/2666710_MSG+SG+BRIDGE+FOR+CITIES+08+OCT+21.mp4

I am pleased to greet the sixth “Bridge for Cities” event.

Cities have been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic — yet they are also demonstrating remarkable resilience and creative problem solving to deliver on the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Climate Agreement.

Many cities are rethinking urban spaces, making them more inclusive, sustainable, and safe;

establishing social protection measures to support women, vulnerable groups and young people;

inventing new ways to live, travel and work for a net zero emissions and resilient world;

providing financial assistance to local business and supporting job creation;

leveraging technology and digitalisation;

and strengthening public health and education systems.

Investment in recovery is a generational opportunity to put climate action, clean energy, gender equality and sustainable development at the heart of cities’ strategies and policies.

But cities cannot do it alone.

They need coordinated action from all levels of government;

strong partnerships with the private sector and civil society;

and the fiscal and policy space to bring solutions to scale.

They also need to be able to learn from each other.

That is why we launched the Local2030 Coalition – to identify innovations and help localize the SDGs.

The United Nations is committed to working with you.

Organizations such as UNIDO are providing platforms for cities to partner up.

Our Resident Coordinators and Country Teams can support your priorities, provide the expertise of our specialized agencies, and connect you with other global players.]  

Together, we can build bridges to an inclusive, sustainable recovery and clean, green cities for all.

Thank you.