In the name of God. Greetings and respects to ladies and gentlemen who are attending the 13th Metropolis World Congress, and I have to thank the Honorable Mayor of Guangzhou for providing this situation for us which is the place for dialogue and learning.
We in cities have inherited heritages from our ancestors. So as we look at the living conditions from the past to the present, we can see great points that we should rely on and build up upon them, and we also see flaws and defects that we should learn from and avoid.
This heritage that we have today reminds us the serious distance and vision that we have to move towards. Every metropolis has a desirable vision for which concerning the theme of the congress on sustainable development and urban governance – we have to depict that desirable vision and approach it step by step.
Each of us carries a faith, a tradition, a belief, and a great national heritage. And in every metropolis, we can take steps to realize the ideals of that great tradition and heritage and create a desirable vision as a flower in a garden, which all over the world together will make a beautiful garden. A garden with diverse flowers, each trying to become a role model, and in this effort, each city involves in a healthy competition and can offer lessons and experiences for others.
This is the first great lesson, that we need each other; and despite diverse faiths, traditions, beliefs, and national values, we can move together towards the desired vision that we believe in and show a beautiful view to the public and the world.
This point of view is vital and stands contrary to that of those who intend to colonize and abuse other nations and pursue Arrogance in the world and seek taking control of others. They seize cultures, heritages, and assets of other nations and try to enforce their own cultures to others, assimilate others and pursue their agendas and interests through this integration and assimilation.
Therefore, while denying this mindset, we pay attention to the exalted thought that every nation has a scent and a fragrance (like a flower), and the unity of nations provides the possibility that we can build a beautiful garden together to help and learn from each other so that we can finally have a better life and a more desirable situation in our communities.
In each metropolis, three components should be considered which are namely the city, the citizens, and the municipality. Every city, wherever it stands, has a considerable distance from its ideal point. And a city can only take steps towards growth and development if it has participating citizens with social responsibility feelings, as well as knowledgeable and committed local governors.
Thus, our effort is to guide the city on the path of evolution as an interconnected complex and to create a role model city with our growth. In Tehran, we intend to make a great role model based on our national beliefs, traditions, and resources, which will provide a great opportunity for others.
The second point is our dear citizens, that nothing and no change is possible and sustainable without them. Our effort is to engage people with the help of activists and scholars, to make that huge change.
And the third point is about the municipality about which we are doing our best to transform from a basic service organization into a social service organization serving people. We want to pursue urban management and local governance in such a way that it would result in cohesion between the citizens and their servants in urban management. In this way, we can introduce a proper role model for you and everyone else.
Once again, I’d like to express my pleasure to be with you for a few minutes and wish every single one of you, success and triumph.