Ban Ki-moon stresses the importance of “resilient and sustainable cities” at the MIPIM 2019

From March 12th to 15th, 2019, the 30th edition of MIPIM, an real estate event, takes place in Cannes, France. It is the world’s leading real estate event gathering key players of the property market. The event allows people from different sectors of the industry to meet and bring the value chain together and provides a unique exhibition and networking platform to forge deals. This year, the main theme for the conferences is “Engaging the Future.”

At the opening ceremony, BKMC Co-chair Ban Ki-moon delivered a keynote and stressed that

“we must ensure that our future cities are resilient and sustainable, creative and innovate, and inclusive and equitable.”

He pointed out that creating resilient and sustainable cities are they key to our future, and the climate change is the “most pressing threat standing in this path.” He also addressed how the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals can help in charting a thriving blueprint for the future.

“Goal 17 of the SDGs clearly highlights the prominent role that the private sector, alongside civil society, academia, and others, should play to help achieve the SDGs,” said Ban. “Global partnerships,” he stressed, “are necessary if we are to deliver on our development commitments.”

Photo by: Yann Coatsaliou

A ‘Small UN’ Ban Ki-moon Foundation to be opened in Seoul

On March 5th, the “Ban Ki-moon Foundation for a Better Future (tentative title)” was announced to be established in Korea at the meeting of promoters held in Seoul. Having BKMC Co-chair Ban Ki-moon as the Chair of its Board, the Foundation will serve as a non-political, non-profit public organization that acts as a ‘small UN’ with below objectives:

  • To improve and promote Ban Ki-moon’s philosophy and vision as the 8th UN Secretary-General by realizing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and conducting academic researches and suggesting policies in order for everyone to ensured of human rights
  • To establish a perpetual peace in the Korean Peninsula as well as to promote peace in East Asia and the globe
  • To protect the future vision and the rights of women, youth, and children and to establish future-oriented values
  • To create and execute varied programs to eradicate poverty and disease in developing countries
  • To lead education on cultivating people of talents and global citizenship in cooperation with various international organizations, including the United Nations, and civil organizations, academic institutes, and  educational institutions both inside and outside Korea

Starting from May 2019, the Foundation will pursue projects with the above visions.

Ban mentioned that “I have tried to promote the agenda on climate change, sustainable development, and women’s empowerment while in the UN” and “now I would like to realize such visions both inside and outside the country in cooperation with the people from different sectors in Korea.”

The meeting of promoters had 46 participants, including:

  • Kim Hwangsik, former Prime Minister of Korea; Chairman of the Board of Directors at Ho-am Foundation (Head of the Meeting of Promoters for the BKM Foundation)
  • Gong Ro-myung, former Minister of Foreign Affairs; Chairman of East Asia Foundation
  • Lee Sang-hee, former Minister of National Defense
  • Kim Yong-hak, President of Yonsei University
  • Han Bi-ya, President of Global Citizen School of World Vision; Author of a best-selling book “Daughter of the Wind: Three and a Half Times around the Globe on Foot”
  • Kim Sook, former Korean Ambassador to the UN; former President of UN Women’s Executive Board
  • Rye Seung-min, Korean gold-medalist table tennis player; Athlete Member of the IOC
  • Son Yeon-jae, Korean retired rhythmic gymnast; 3-time Asian Championships All-around Champion
  • Yoo Dong-geun, Korean actor

Ban Ki-moon and Heinz Fischer commends Kenyan President on “The Big 4”

On March 4th, Minister Counselor Humphrey Kanana and First Secretary Glenns Etyang of the Kenyan Embassy in Vienna visited the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens to discuss possible collaboration between the Centre and Kenya.

Last month, BKMC Co-chairs Ban Ki-moon and Heinz Fischer wrote a letter to President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya to commend him on “The Big 4” Agenda that the president has initiated to ensure affordable health and living for all Kenyans which will hopefully leapfrog the country’s human development and progress.

The Agenda focuses on:

  • Manufacturing
  • Affordable Housing
  • Universal Health Coverage (UHC)
  • Food Security

On the letter, Co-chair Ban also hoped for fruitful exchanges with the president during his visit to Kenya in May 2019 and expressed his support for advancing road safety in the African region together with President Jean Todt of the International Federation of Automobiles (FIA), who is a Board member of the Centre.

Watch an informative video about “The Big 4” here:

 

 

BKMC co-organizes the symposium on “Empowering Women and Supporting Youth in Development and Citizenship” in Kuwait

In cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning and Development of Kuwait, the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens co-organized the symposium on “Empowering Women and Supporting Youth in Development and Citizenship” in Kuwait on February 12th, 2019.

At the opening, BKMC Co-chairs Ban Ki-moon and Heinz Fischer delivered a keynote.

Ban emphasized that “now is the time to mobilize the global business community as never before.”

“Realizing the Sustainable Development Goals will improve the environment for doing good business and building markets. Trillions of dollars in public and private funds are to be redirected towards the SDGs, creating huge opportunities for responsible companies to deliver solutions,” said Ban.

“Despite the challenges we currently face,” he concluded “if we join together in strong partnerships and move forward as global citizens, we can achieve our global goals and create a brighter future for all.”

Co-chair Fischer stressed that women’s empowerment

“must also be regarded as a global issue and put into the bigger picture. It is a key to peace, to eliminating all forms of violence, and to enabling families, communities, and nations to thrive.”

He also shared the deepest appreciation to the Centre’s Board member, Ambassador Sadiq Marafi, praising his commitment to supporting the Centre from the beginning and to all his collaborative initiatives to foster women’s empowerment.

Fischer added, “we are looking forward to intensifying our work with Kuwait and in particular with the General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning and Development and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Kuwait and to identifying further opportunities for cooperation.”

The 1st session of the symposium was entitled “Empowering Women,” featuring women leaders and representatives from both public and civil sector. BKMC Board members Irina Bokova, former UNESCO Director-General, and Andrea Pfanzelter, KACIID Senior Advisor, were featured as panelists of the session.

For the 2nd session entitled “Youth Role in Development and Citizenship,” representatives of a specialized center in supporting youth development in Kuwait and from the civil society, a graduate student from Kuwait University, as well as BKMC Board members were featured. The featured Board members of the Centre included Jean Todt, FIA President, Ahmad Alhendawi, Secretary-General of the World Organization of the Scout Movement, and Michael Sheldrick, Global Citizen Vice President.

The last session entitled “Role and Efforts of Private Sector in Empowering Women and Supporting Youth in Development” featured representatives from Zain Telecommunication, Kuwait National Bank, and private sector.

 

The 3rd BKMC Board meeting takes place in Kuwait

On February 11-12th, the 3rd Board meeting of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens took place in Kuwait. The ‘Why Group’ (Márcia Balisciano, Susan Myers, Arrey Obenson, and Michael Sheldrick) of the Centre presented a document based on their discussion on the “Why” of the Ban Ki-moon Centre, suggesting clearer vision and missions, measurable projects and investments, and the Centre’s position in correlation with its Co-chairs and Board members.

After discussion, the Board agreed on the following adjusted mission statement:

“The Ban Ki-moon Centre – working with global citizens across boundaries to create a better and safer future.”

The Centre will continue to put efforts in achieving its goals by
* Focusing on implementing the project plans
* Measuring deliverables
* Dividing responsibilities between the affiliated offices
* Branding and consolidating the Centre’s activities
* Fundraising for 2020 budget objective

BKMC Meeting with Arab Fund for Economic & Social Development

On February 11th, BKMC Board met with General Manager Abdullatif Yousef Al-Hamad of the Arab Fund for Economic & Social Development in Kuwait.

Co-chair Ban Ki-moon said that the “economic development is not possible without addressing the issues of climate change, etc.,” and added that a “scholarship is needed for youth in Arab region.”

Co-chair Heinz Fischer added that there is Erasmus scholarship program funded by the European Union that can be adopted in the Arab region.

BKMC meets with Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Economic Affairs of Kuwait

The Board of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens visited Bayan Palace in Kuwait on February 11th to have meetings with Kuwaiti Deputy Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah and Minister Mariam Eqeal Al-Saied Hashem Al-Aqeal of State for Economic Affairs as well as other delegates of the government.

At the meeting with Minister Al-Aqeal, Co-chair Ban Ki-moon delivered a compliment on Kuwait’s role of mediation and moderate diplomacy. He said that “Kuwait is seemingly the country that has contributed to the unity and solidarity,” aiming for GCC. Ban emphasized that the Centre aims to foster global citizenship and that the protectionism that builds up walls needs to be demolished.

Co-chair Heinz Fischer said that “global risks need global attention.” He stressed the importance of achieving humanitarian goals without unnecessary competitions.

Minister Al-Aqeel said that “Kuwait has implemented the SDGs in National Development of the Plan 2020” and that the implementation is currently in action.

Dr. Khaled Mahdi, Secretary General of the General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning and Development, also mentioned that the Kuwaiti government will deliver the first report on the SDGs by July 2019.

He said that the goals will be implemented “on the national level as well as global level.”

The BKMC Board shared the impact and influence of the Centre’s work in women’s empowerment as well as some ideas on the strategic direction for the Kuwaiti government to reach the level of taking an effective role in women’s empowerment.

BKMC Co-chairs meet with His Highness Amir of Kuwait

Upon the visit of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens to Kuwait, Co-chairs Ban Ki-moon and Heinz Fischer met with His Highness Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, Amir of the State of Kuwait on February 11th. Dr. Khaled Mahdi, Secretary General of the Supreme Council for Planning, Minister Mariam al-Aqeel for economic affairs, National Assembly Speaker Marzouq al-Ghanim, and Ambassador Sadiq Marafi, who is a Board member of the Centre, were present at the meeting.

As former Secretary General of the UN, Co-chair Ban expressed his appreciation for the Amir’s leading role in global humanitarian activities and mediation efforts in the Middle East region.

At an interview with the Kuwaiti press, Co-chair Fischer said “we are very proud that we had the honor to be received by His Highness the Amir and he promised and announced full support for the goals of the Ban Ki-moon Centre, the goals of humanity and the goals of supporting the sustainable development.”

He added, “I’m impressed that His Highness is very well informed in supporting the bilateral relations between Kuwait and Korea, and Kuwait and Austria.”

Photos: Kuwaiti government
Interview: https://www.kuna.net.kw/ArticleDetails.aspx?id=2777268&language=en

National Assembly Speaker Marzouq al-Ghanim welcomes the BKMC in Kuwait

On February 11th, Marzouq al-Ghanim, Speaker of the Kuwaiti National Assembly welcomed the Centre’s Co-chairs Ban Ki-moon and Heinz Fischer and the Board members Daniele Bodini, Irina Bokova, as well as Ambassador Sadiq Marafi who organized the visit. Before meeting the Amir of the State of Kuwait, the group had a brief discussion and a tour around the Bayan Palace.

 

Meeting with Representatives of the Kuwaiti Charity Associations

On February 11th, the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens had a meeting with a number of charity organizations and associations in Kuwait. Together with the representatives from the organizations, the Centre’s Board members discussed the importance of global citizenship mindset and volunteer services to achieve sustainable development of all.

Co-chair Ban Ki-moon emphasized “to promote the humanitarian assistance for helping people and fostering global citizenship and empowering women and youth.”

Ban added that together we can contribute much more for those who may need help.

Co-chair Heinz Fischer also said that modern social policy was born in Europe, but “individuals, families, and situations were not covered” since it was based on registration.

“Every step further is necessary,” Fischer said, “Exchange experiences; inform the results.”

Moderated by BKMC CEO Monika Froehler, the meeting opened up an active conversation to which the Kuwaiti representatives actively added their ideas on the areas that need further improvement. Possible areas of collaboration with the Centre and among the charity organizations themselves in cooperation with both private and public sector were also examined.