SONGKHLA, 24 FEBRUARY 2020 – The 3rd IMT-GT Green Cities Mayor Council (GCMC) meeting was held at The BED Vacation Rajamangala Hotel, Songkhla, Thailand. The meeting which was hosted by Songkhla Municipality is the follow-up from the 2nd IMT-GT GCMC meeting that was held on 23 August 2019 in Penang, Malaysia. The main objectives of the 3rd GCMC meeting were, among other to formalise the establishment of GCMC; and workplan for the period of 2020 to 2021. The meeting was attended by Mayors and representatives from IMT-GT cities
The meeting was chaired by Hon. Dato’ Ar. Yew Tung Seang, Mayor of City Council of Penang Island, as the Chairman of IMT-GT GCMC for the period of 2019 to 2021. The council agreed with the appointment of Mayor of Hat Yai Municipality and Mayor of Pekanbaru City as the Vice-Chairmen of the IMT-GT GCMC. Under the mechanism of Green Cities Mayors Council, there are seven sectors of coordination. The meeting agreed upon focal city of these portfolios whereby; Transportation and Carbon Literacy led by Thailand, Energy and Education for Sustainable Development led by Indonesia, while Solid Waste Management, Biodiversity, and Circular Economy led by the Chairman; Malaysia.
The establishment of the mayor council is in-line with IMT-GT Sustainable Urban Development Framework (SUDF) that was endorsed by the Leaders during the 12th IMT-GT Summit on 23rd June 2019 in Bangkok, Thailand. SUDF is a guiding document for the cities and provinces in IMT-GT and act as steering document for identification and implementation of actions in-line with the objectives stated under the environment pillar of the IMT-GT Vision 2036. The involvement of cities in the implementation of SUDF is important as the framework recognises and integrates ‘Goal 11 – Sustainable cities and communities’ of the Sustainable Development Goals.
Hon. Dr. Somsak Tantiseranee, Mayor of Songkhla City, as the host city for this meeting; reiterated strong commitment in realising Songkhla City as green city. Songkhla City as one of the early movers for IMT-GT Green Cities Initiative has started their ‘Green City’ project since 2010 under the concept of ‘City of Tree’, one of four (4) strategies under ‘Low Carbon City’. The meeting end with site visit organised by Songkhla Municipality to several green projects and tourist attraction around the city. The outcome of the meeting will be presented at the 5th IMT-GT Green Council Meeting on 20 August 2020, in Hat Yai, Songkhla, Thailand.