World Economic Forum (WEF) on 13 April 2015 released a report titled Urban Development Recommendations for India under the Future of Urban Development and Services (FUDS) Initiative. The report has been written in collaboration with Accenture.
The report highlights the importance of wider private-sector participation to bridge the urban infrastructure and services funding gap of 110 billion US dollars, which is widening due to India’s rapid urban population growth.
The WEF in its report has made three recommendations on urban development which the Government of India can take so as to foster inclusive growth in urban India. These recommendations are:
Integrate spatial planning at all governmental levels: The primary goal of spatial planning is to integrate housing, strategic infrastructure and urban infrastructure, and improve national and local governance in the context of urban development.
Create a stable policy framework for private investment in urban infrastructure: This emphasizes on creating right conditions for the investors and foster public-private partnerships to enable investments in strategic infrastructure and urban development.
Create institutions to stimulate capacity building and attract talent to grow businesses: Private sector participation requires creation of institutions that will help the private sector in increasing the quality of white collar service jobs and attracting investment in manufacturing capacity. It also emphasizes on need for interdisciplinary collaboration in the area of urban development.
Status of urban development in India
India with an urban population of 410 million is the world’s second largest urban population and its urban population is forecasted to almost double to 814 million between 2014 and 2050.
However, the urbanization rate of India is relatively low at 32 percent. As a result, India is witnessing accelerated migration from rural areas to cities. This in turn is leading to inadequate access to basic urban infrastructure and services facilities to urban population.
Towards this, Government of India under Prime Minister Narendra Modi is making some efforts. These include among others introduction of 100 Smart Cities initiative, launch of Heritage City Development and Augmentation Yojana (HRIDAY) and Swachh Bharat Abhiyan (Clean India Mission).
For all this, India needs an investment of more than 640 billion US dollars between 2012 and 2031 to deliver basic urban infrastructure to this growing urban population.
About FUDS Initiative
The WEF Future of Urban Development and Services (FUDS) Initiative serves as a partner in transformation to cities around the world as they seek to address major urban challenges and transition towards smarter, more sustainable cities in this rapidly urbanizing world. The FUDS Initiative works collaboration with local partners.
The report on India is the third in the FUDS Initiative. The first two presented the results of the initiative’s engagement with three Chinese cities: Tianjin, Dalian and Zhangjiakou.
What: Released by WEF
When: 13 April 2015