On 29 October 2020, the Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) secretariat presented the draft UfM Strategic Action Plan and its Housing Action Plan to the Euro-Mediterranean local and regional authorities, as well as associations active in the region, within the framework of the ongoing consultation process on the development of the Strategic Action Plan for sustainable urban development.
The presentation was organized by Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) and the Euro-Mediterranean Regional and Local Assembly (ARLEM). UNESCO World Heritage Centre is a knowledge partner for the initiative, first, recalling the numerous World Heritage properties in the Euro- Mediterranean region including more than 150 World Heritage cities where the Outstanding Universal Value must be protected for all humanity. Second, contributing to mainstream the protection of urban heritage by including the principles of the 2011 UNESCO Recommendation on the Historic Urban Landscape into the Action Plan that will serve as a guidance document for the 42 Member States of the UfM. And finally, sharing the methodology and approach of the UNESCO Culture|2030 Indicators to measure the role and contribution of culture to the 2030 Agenda at the urban level. The preparation of the Strategic Action Plan has been led by a team of academics from the Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment of the Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) in The Netherlands.
UNESCO welcomes efforts to address heritage in the context of sustainable urban development at the regional level with a view to the Euro-Mediterranean region conserving its heritage and identity while also striving to achieve the targets of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the New Urban Agenda. Towards this end, the Deputy Director welcomed the proposal to establish a heritage hub and create a Mediterranean World Heritage Cities Network, highlighting the potential of urban heritage conservation to contribute towards sustainable development and climate action in the region. She called for an integrated approach to urban development and heritage conservation and referred to 2011 Recommendation on the Historic Urban Landscape, Sustainable Development Goals and the UNESCO Culture|2030 Indicators as tools to support the Member States of UfM in their actions to protect urban heritage.