Private-Public Partnership Forum on Seoul Metropolitan Government’s Development of Global Cities
Date: July 30, 2014 Venue: Multipurpose Hall at Seoul Metropolitan Government
Greetings, everyone! I am Park Won-soon, the Mayor of Seoul. May I begin by expressing my thanks to you for attending this Private-Public Partnership Forum on the Seoul Metropolitan Government’s Development of Global Cities? I also would like to deeply thank the Vice President of Korea Federation of Small and Medium business Song Jae-Hee, the head of Korea Research Institute for Human Settlement Kim Kyung-Hwan, and the heads of the many other like-minded organizations for attending the launch of this forum despite your busy schedules.
Do you know where the city of Seoul ranks in terms of the competitiveness of global cities? It may be put into several positions depending on the index, but last year the city of Seoul ranked 6th in terms of the Global Power City Index (GPCL). In addition, it was ranked 1st in Best City for Conferences for two consecutive years by business travelers and won the Grand Prize and other awards in four categories. This clearly shows that the city of Seoul is growing into a leading city that is highly recognized around the world.
Don’t you think that as the capital city of Korea, Seoul has transformed itself to a developed city from one that was once the recipient of international aid after the Korean War? When many of you here were growing up during the period of the 1960s and 1970s, you might have thought that Seoul had no hope for that time. Fortunately, however, the city of Seoul has been successfully urbanized and has transformed itself in various areas, becoming a global mega city with 10 million citizens. It is no wonder that every year around 6,200 foreign public officials visit our global city to learn about a variety of policies. This is indeed a giant leap that has occurred over the last 50 years.
Seoul has rapidly urbanized, rising from the ruins of the Korean War, and has gained technological prowess and manpower through a grueling and never-ending process of trial and error. This has become a valuable asset that has driven Seoul to become globally competitive and recognized as a growth model.
Currently, a large number of foreign cities have requested cooperation and assistance from Seoul, and the policies of Seoul are benefiting 22 cities in 21 countries. The Private-Public Partnership has allowed all of Seoul’s efforts to be fruitful; however, this is just the beginning.
Through the launch of the Private-Public Partnership Forum on the Seoul Metropolitan Government’s Development of Global Cities, I would like to spur Seoul to expand its power in more countries with the help of stronger cooperation and collaboration with the businesses, organizations, experts and participants here who have struggled to develop the city of Seoul.
This forum is the first step towards that goal, and will serve as a bridge between global cities and the private sector. Active inroads overseas will pave the way for growing the power of businesses, boosting the economy of Seoul, and spreading hope to foreign cities.
As noted in the declaration, I am sure that we will gather together to take the lead in the new changes of global city development. I would like to close my speech by once again expressing my thanks to you for attending this forum and asking for your active participation in the forum. Thank you.