Imperial Springs Forum: Inclusive, Sustainable and Resilient Cities in the Belt and Road Initiative

The Club de Madrid Members who will contribute to the discussions are: Esko Aho, Prime Minister of Finland (1991-1995); Vaira Vike Freiberga – President of Latvia (1999-2007), President of the Club de Madrid;  Seung-soo Han – Prime Minister of the Republic of Korea (2008-2009);  Wim Kok – Prime Minister of the Netherlands (1994-2002);  Benjamin Mkapa – President of Tanzania (1995-2005); Olusegun Obasanjo – President of Nigeria (1999-2007); George Papandreou – Prime Minister of Greece (2009-2011); Andrés Pastrana – President of Colombia (1998-2002);  Jorge Quiroga – President of Bolivia (2001-2002), Vice-President, Club de Madrid; Petre Roman – Prime Minister of Romania (1989-1991) and Jenny Shipley – Prime Minister of New Zealand (1997-1999). Montek Ahluwalia, Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission India (2002-2014), and Member of the Shared Societies Project network of experts (Net PLUSS) will also take part in the debates

The Forum will engage political leaders and scholars with China’s political and business leadership in analyzing these challenging topics in light of China’s major foreign policy and political economy initiative, underlining best practices and feasible strategies to advance the development of more efficient, inclusive and sustainable urbanization models and societies in China and the countries on the OBOR route. More specifically, the Forum will:

  • Encourage the development of an ambitious vision on the green transformation of cities, in China and in those countries touched by the OBOR initiative in Asia, Eurasia, Europe, Oceania, North Africa and the Middle East, fostering the adoption of an integrated green development, mitigation/adaptation approach at the local level, investment in sustainable energy solutions, the establishment of low-carbon targets and the transparent and accountable measurement of emissions;
  • Establish an OBOR City Alliance aimed at serving as a vehicle for sharing knowledge, coordinate efforts and improve cooperation to advance economic development and more efficient, inclusive and sustainable urbanization;
  • Raise awareness on the role and importance of OBOR as China’s main foreign policy and development initiative and potential as a framework for promoting innovative and sustainable growth and international cooperation;
  • Highlight the links between China’s pursuit of the OBOR initiative and its role as G20 Chair during 2016.


The WLA-Club de Madrid is a non-profit international organization and the world´s largest, independent group of democratic, political leaders, committed to addressing the challenges of good governance and effective leadership. The principal added value of the Club de Madrid is a membership of 110 former Presidents and Prime Ministers, from more than 70 countries, willing and able to share their diverse expertise, experience and networks. Through the World Leadership Alliance-Club de Madrid we partner with governments, inter-governmental organizations, civil society, scholars and the business world, building bridges between them and current leaders and policy makers and encouraging dialogue to foster social and political change towards inclusive and peaceful societies.

The Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries (CPAFFC) is a national people’s organization engaged in people-to-people diplomacy of the People’s Republic of China. The aims of the Association are to enhance people’s friendship, further international cooperation, safeguard world peace and promote common development. On behalf of the Chinese people, it makes friends and deepens friendship in the international community and various countries around the world, lays and expands the social basis of friendly relations between China and other countries, and works for the cause of human progress and solidarity. It implements China’s independent foreign policy of peace, observing the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence, while carrying out all-directional, multi-level and broad-area people-to-people friendship work.

The Australia and China Friendship Association (ACFEA) was registered in September 2005 in the NSW Australia as a non-for-profit institution. The president of the association is Dr. Chau Chak Wing, a prestigious leader in the Chinese community of Australia. Its Advisory Board consists of members who are interested in the promotion of people-to-people contact between Australia and China. Since its establishment, the ACFEA has been committed to the promotion of friendly exchanges between Australia and China in the areas of trade and economy, culture, education, the arts and science while organizing high-profile bilateral dialogues or events. The ACFEA headquarters in Sydney Australia with representative offices located in Beijing, Guangzhou and Hong Kong.