The economic power of cities has exploded globally. It is therefore not surprising that cities are taking foreign policy matters into their own hands as central governments increasingly become politically gridlocked, with leaders often disconnected from a local context.
The withdrawal of funding for the upgrade of SH2 exemplifies the stark reality of a misguided decision by central government. It’s a significant road for Western BOP residents, visitors and businesses, and it’s dangerous beyond measure. It kills productivity, moral and people. It’s a disgrace.
It may surprise some to learn that the focus of the APEC Business Advisory Council is not solely on business. We spend some time discussing practical initiatives to address our common challenges of poverty, aging populations, aging infrastructure, the changing nature of work, and climate change to name a few.
This week in #Hangzhou, I discussed with colleagues how cities are increasingly well positioned to take an active leadership position on such matters, given their economic and human capital, and their smaller, more nimble governments.
While it’s very important for a city council to have a clear focus on delivering value to its residents and managing gro
wth in a planned and prudent manner, it is worth noting that cities are also well positioned to form their own partnerships to work toward common goals at the local level and beyond national borders.
#Tauranga is going to grow with or without a plan. Let’s ensure we manage this growth with a plan. And we have an opportunity to do it in collaboration with cities who are similar in size and topography to Tauranga, while also listening and respecting the needs of our residents.