ANGELES CITY--Angeles City Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan has returned from the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) High-Level Urbanization Forum 2016 held in Ningbo, Zhejiang Province, China last June 2 and 3.
The forum, hosted by the China National Development and Reform Commission, in collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, is aimed at exploring opportunities for cooperation, promoting trade and investment, creating jobs, safeguarding social equality, with a view to achieving people-oriented urbanization and inclusive growth.
According to Pamintuan, conferences like these help a lot in promoting goodwill among local chief executives from different part of the world and share best practices in improving government service and raising the quality of life of the people.
"It is not wrong to copy from other countries or from other people specially if the program is successful and will greatly benefit the people. It is more advantageous for us if we will just follow the steps and process they have taken and adapt it to our unique situations," Pamintuan said.
"As a matter of fact, the ideas that prompted me to convert our idle public spaces, including the abandoned PNR railways, the Plaza Angel, and the other pocket parks and gardens, are gathered from what I witnessed and experienced during official travels in different parts of the world," he added.
However, Pamintuan added that these conferences are not one-way exchanges. In fact, he was also asked to share his experiences and accomplishments, particularly in the concept of inclusive growth when promulgating and implementing government projects.
Among the programs and projects that Pamintuan initiated is the establishment of the City College of Angeles which is home to almost 2,000 students, who, prior to the CCA's establishment, have no dreams of ever attaining college education due to poverty. Just early this year, 183 students became the first batch to graduate from CCA and are now gainfully employed.
Participants of this forum are high ranking government officials and agencies of APEC member economies, mayors, scholars and experts, entrepreneurs and media representatives and other major stakeholders and resource speakers.
Pamintuan was invited to share his experience as a local chief executive and his efforts and achievements in making Angeles City a liveable city and how he practices inclusive growth as a policy in his administration.