India may see 300 million new urban residents by 2050 and it will be required to to build climate-friendly cities to address challenge of accommodating the needs of the growing population, a UN report has said.
The first 'World Cities Report 2016- Urbanisation and Development: Emerging Futures' report by UN Habitat said, in India, urban areas contribute more than 60 percent of the GDP and an additional 300 million new urban residents are predicted by 2050, leading to a call by the government to build 100 new cities over the period.
"The attendant amount of additional greenhouse gases would have consequences on climate change. The alternative, if challenging, is to build denser, low-infrastructure, low-energy cities," the UN human settlement program report said.
It added that significant to this challenge are the twin bottlenecks of municipal finance and infrastructure finance for electricity, transport, water supply, communications and sanitation in support of production.
Countries like India, Bangladesh and Pakistan feature huge, expanding urban populations in mega-cities such as Dhaka, Mumbai, Delhi, Karachi and Lahore as well as in growing number of other cities, it said.
The global smart city market will grow by 14 per cent annually, from $506.8 billion in 2012 to $1.3 trillion in 2019, according to estimates.