Compass Housing supports Fifth Pacific Urban Forum

12 Jun 2019

Compass Housing supports Fifth Pacific Urban Forum

Compass Housing is supporting the Fifth Pacific Urban Forum (PUF5) to be held in Nadi, Fiji in July.

Compass’ Manager of International and Stakeholder Engagement, Ben Wong, is a member of the PUF5 organising committee. Knowledge Manager, Prof David Adamson OBE, will moderate a Forum special session on the challenges of providing adequate and affordable housing throughout the Pacific.

Following the adoption of the New Urban Agenda (NUA) and a renewed recognition of the many opportunities and challenges for the Pacific, PUF5 will review progress towards the Pacific New Urban Agenda. The Forum is an important pre-cursor event to the Asia-Pacific Forum in Penang in October 2019 and the World Urban Forum in Abu Dhabi in February 2020.

Participants of PUF5 will include regional organi­sations, national and local governments, non-gov­ernmental organisations, community-based organisations, traditional leaders, professionals, research institutions and academies, private sector, relevant development partners as well as media. Countries previously engaged in PUFs include: Fiji, Kiribati, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solo­mon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu. PUF5 aims to

  • raise awareness of the importance of national and regional policy frameworks
  • improve information exchange on sustainable urbanisation in the Pacific
  • obtain commitments from countries on the implementation, review and monitoring of the Pacific New Urban Agenda
  • develop new partnerships to support an enabling envi­ronment for urban development the Pacific.

The New Urban Agenda is the outcome document of the 2016 UN Habitat III global summit. It sets out a common vision and global standards for urban development and directly addresses specific issues pertaining to SIDS. At World Urban Forum 9 (WUF9) held in Malaysia in 2018, heads of Pacific island delegations and the members of the delegations, signed a statement reconfirming their commitment to the implementation of the Pacific New Urban Agenda and the New Urban Agenda in their respective countries and urged for remobilisation and reinvigoration of regional policy attention to urbanisation issues.

Compass has strong interest in supporting Australia’s Pacific neighbours to meet the housing needs of its citizens. It is in the process of Australian Council for International Development (ACFID) accreditation and has two completed storm shelter/community facilities in Vanuatu as part of broader planned humanitarian activities in the region.

Compass' support for PUF5 is also part of its advocacy for the implementation of the NUA and the UN’s sustainable development goals. Compass has gained special consultative status with the UN Economic and Social Council. It was one of a small number of organisations, outside of UN member nations, to make a statement on the NUA from the floor of the global UN Habitat lll conference held in Quito, Ecuador in October 2016. Group Managing Director, Greg Budworth is Vice President of the UN General Assembly of Partners where he is leading international efforts to implement the NUA. Compass Housing organised Australia’s first two conferences on implementing the NUA, held in Melbourne in 2017, and in Newcastle in 2018. Compass is also a Lead Partner with the World Urban Campaign.

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