UN-Habitat and Partners hold National Consultation Workshop: “Towards a National Urban Policy for Myanmar”

Photo 1: Deputy Minister of Ministry of                    Photo 2: Experts from UN-Habitat, DUHD,
Construction H.E. U Kyaw Linn delivering                  Parliamentarians and Participants
the Opening Address

Nay Pyi Taw, 14 December 2018 – The National Consultation Workshop titled “Towards a National Urban Policy for Myanmar” was successfully held on 14th December 2018 at Thingaha Hotel in Nay Pyi Taw. It was attended by Deputy Minister U Kyaw Linn of  the Ministry of Construction , parliamentarians from relevant parliamentary committees, high representatives from Nay Pyi Taw Council and from all  the fourteen States and Regions, the Director General of the Department of Urban and Housing Department (DUHD), senior  DUHD  officials, DUHD advisors, development partners, representatives from embassies, professional associations and  the Urban Policy Expert from UN-Habitat HQ – Regional and Metropolitan Planning Unit.

The Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Construction, in his opening remarks stated “Myanmar’s National Urban Policy Framework outlines five vital thematic areas that are crucial for an inclusive and sustainable development of Myanmar. These thematic areas  for discussion at the workshop are not just priority areas for the National Urban Policy but most vitally, harmonizes with our country’s National Priorities such as the Myanmar Sustainable Development Plan (MSDP).”

Mr. Bijay Karmacharya, Country Programme Manager of UN-Habitat in Myanmar stressed Urbanization is unstoppable and irreversible.” and pointed out that  “Myanmar is at a critical time for forward thinking and preparing its urbanization process through a National level policy which should become a guiding instrument to manage its urbanization.”

Photo 3: Mr. Bijay Karmacharya, Country                Photo 4: Participants at the National Consultation
Programme Manager for UN-Habitat Myanmar     Workshop discussion panels
delivering welcoming remarks

Dr. Ulrich Graute, an Urban Specialist from UN-Habitat HQ – Regional and Metropolitan Planning Unit, delivered a powerpoint presentation on the achievements until now of the NUP preparations  , next steps and programme of work for 2019,.  Daw Mie Mie Tin, DUHD Deputy Director General focused on National Housing Policy, whilst  Daw Aye Aye Myint,DUHD Deputy Director General, and Mr. Bijay Karmacharya, Country Programme Manager of UN-Habitat Myanmar, talked on ‘Urban Issues in Myanmar and policy priority’.

The presentation session  was followed by the panel discussions  where the participants were discussed the role of private sector in the development of NUP, the contribution of private sector to smart cities strategies, the contribution of research institutions/universities to the implementation of NUP, the support and technical guidance that UN-Habitat will provide for the implementation of NUP in Myanmar, the partnership between national and local authorities, planning professionals, civil society organizations and other stakeholders, the donor community support for the implementation of NUP for Myanmar.

The National Urban Policy Framework (NUP-F) was discussed  vertically   at a previous NUP workshop held on 4thJune 2018 and was  now validated horizontally  to close the Feasibility Stage of the NUP.

The priority areas cover five thematic areas; municipal governance and finance, urban and regional legislation, land governance, housing and environmental and climate change issues related to urban development.

The initiation of National Urban Policy Development in Myanmar started in December 2014 with the preparation of the National Urban Policy Note that outlines broad themes and topics to be addressed by a National Urban Policy. Ministry of Construction with the technical assistance from UN-Habitat then produced the Rapid Urban Diagnostic Report, Myanmar (RUDRMYA) which was finalized in February 2016 in consultation with senior advisors and officials at the Department of Urban and Housing Development (DUHD) of the Ministry.

Development of a National Urban Policy attained a national developmental priority in Myanmar after the approval of the New Urban Agenda at Habitat III in Quito, October 2016. The Ministry took forward the process of policy development based on the findings of RUDRMYA. The third main step towards the National Urban Policy, a National Urban Policy Framework (NUP-F), was completed in early 2017. Therefore, the NUP-Framework offers an outline and an entry point for consultative policy dialogues and discussions vertically with sub-national entities (State and Region Governments) and horizontally with the relevant line Ministries as well as stakeholders in civil society and development partners in the urban sector.

Photo 5: Documentary Group Photo                       Photo 6: Panel Discussion Photo
Photo 7: Mr. Ulrich Graute, Urban Policy Expert     Photo 8: Daw Aye Aye Myint, Dy. Director General
from UN-Habitat HQ-Regional and Metropolitan    from DUHD, MOC
Planning Unit
Photo 9: Daw Mie Mie Tin, Dy. Director General    Photo 10: A Group discussion in session at the
from DUHD, MOC                                                         National Consultation Workshop