May 22, 2019
NEW DELHI – WeGO has concluded a four-day trip to New Delhi, to establish relations with 100 smart cities and other key stakeholders across India at the 5th Smart Cities India 2019 Expo.
WeGO was the “sustainability partner” of this year’s event, which is one of Asia’s largest trade fairs and conferences on smart cities. WeGO’s Secretary General Kyong-yul Lee was present to deliver a keynote speech at the plenary session and share member cases of best practice in the City Leader’s Conclave.
The Commissioner and other officials from Agra, a WeGO member since the organization’s establishment in 2010, also took part in the event and introduced their city’s smart city developments to SG Lee.
On the sidelines of the event, WeGO met with Mr. Rahul Kapoor, Director of the Smart Cities Division at India’s Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, which is in charge of the nation’s “Smart Cities Mission.” SG Lee expressed his desire to see WeGO as the international platform for the success of India’s 100 smart cities, and invited the mission team to upcoming training programs and other events in Korea, including the Executive Committee (EXCOM) Meeting and Seoul Smart Cities Summit.
The Smart Cities Mission is scheduled to host its 3rd Apex Conference of Smart City CEOs, which will assemble all 100 mayors and other city leaders, in June or July.
Mr. Kapoor pledged to actively explore ways forward in his division’s cooperation with WeGO, and extended an invitation for WeGO to attend the conference once the dates and location have been set.
At the expo, WeGO additionally met with officials from the State of Karnataka and smart cities Thane and Pune; around a dozen prospective partners from the private sector specializing in a range of smart city areas; and institutions such as the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy (ITDP), Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, and WeGO partner UCLG-ASPAC, which conveyed interest to coordinate in the context of the ASEAN Smart Cities Network (ASCN).
SG Lee was also interviewed by the Hindustan Times, one of India’s largest English-language newspapers, on his organization’s ambitious plans for India and its 100 smart cities.
In a bid to further strengthen its ties with India, WeGO reached an informal agreement with expo organizer Exhibitions India Group, to act as its partner for smart cities moving forward. The 6th Smart Cities India 2020 Expo is tentatively scheduled for May 2020.