SPO 8 - African Metropolitan Cities and Regions
PRESENTATION OF THE SESSION
Africa's 2063 horizon will be characterized by two major trends: globalization, urbanization and the metropolization of cities. Urbanization will not be limited to the evolution of cities; urbanization marks all territories, urban but also rural.
Africa's urban framework has changed rapidly. In 1960, Africa had two cities with more than one million inhabitants, Cairo and Johannesburg. In 2015, there are 79 African cities with more than one million inhabitants and 21 cities with more than two million inhabitants. Five cities have more than 8 million inhabitants, one per sub-region: Lagos, Cairo, Johannesburg-Gauteng, Kinshasa and Nairobi. Urbanization is not just about big cities; 70% of the urban population resides in secondary cities.
The urban framework will be characterized by metropolization. The trend towards precariousness accentuates urban exclusion and segregation. In the next twenty years, Africa will need to welcome an additional urban population equivalent to the current urban population, i.e. nearly 500 million new urban dwellers. Over the next twenty or thirty years, mainly in poor countries, as much infrastructure will have to be built as has been built so far.
This will necessarily lead to a paradigm shift for African countries but will also lead to profound disruptions for African metropolises. They are entering a phase of ecological, demographic, economic, social and geopolitical transition for sustainable development. African Metropolises must adopt a strategic approach that consists in responding to emergencies but that is part of a structural transformation perspective UCLG Africa and METROPOLIS in a new strategic partnership engage African Metropolis Leaders to reflect and build dynamic partnerships around a platform for reflection and exchange called the Forum of African Cities and Metropolises.