Habitat International Coalition
Global network for the right to habitat and social justice
 
Possible postponement of the World Urban Forum IV in Nanjing, China
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As a result of the recent earthquake in China’s Sichuan Province, the Ministry of Housing and Construction of China (MHCC) which is host to the Fourth session of the World Urban Forum, and which is keen for a successful event, has suggested a possible postponement of the meeting. This is so that it (MHCC) can concentrate on humanitarian relief operations as a matter of priority to ensure that the populations affected are properly sheltered before the onset of next winter.

06-25-2008

This very difficult situation of force majeure facing the country, and in particular the Ministry of Housing and Construction of China, is undeniable and understood. The Members of the Committee of Permanent Representatives in Nairobi and UN-HABITAT have discussed the matter and are fully sympathetic with the situation. However, as an official meeting of the United Nations mandated by the General Assembly to be held this year, postponement is not possible. Discussions are underway with China to find a mutually acceptable solution. Such a solution would entail more support by the UN-HABITAT Secretariat in the organization of the Conference to reduce the burden on the host with the intention of keeping the meeting as planned in Nanjing, thereby avoiding financial losses for WUF 4 partners who have already made travel and other committments.

Should difficulties in holding the meeting in Nanjing prove insurmountable, WUF 4 will be relocated to another suitable venue in Asia on the same dates so as to minimize logistical and financial inconvenience.

If the Asian option does not work out, in line with UN rules and standard practice, we are pleased to inform WUF 4 participants that UN-HABITAT's host country, Kenya, has kindly offered to host the event in Nairobi during the same dates.

WUF 4 participants are advised to continue with registration and their substantive preparations for the event as they monitor progress on the venue on UN Habitat website. It is anticipated that the matter of the venue will have been concluded by 15th July.

 
 
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