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Helen Clark Calls on the Private Sector to Engage More in Sustainable Development - Nov. 29, 2013

UNDP Administrator highlights the work of the Business Call to Action at event in Tokyo - Nov. 29, 2013

NEW YORK and TOKYO, Nov. 29 /CSRwire/ - United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Tokyo and the Business Call to Action (BCtA) hosted  the first BCtA event in Japan to encourage the Japanese private sector to participate in innovative business approaches that create development impact.  

Launched in 2008, the Business Call to Action is a multi-stakeholder initiative that challenges companies to develop inclusive business models that allow for commercial success and also offer the potential for development impact. The program has gained significant momentum in Japan, where to date six Japanese companies have made commitments in sectors such as energy, financial services, and agriculture.

The BCtA forum in Tokyo featured a number of innovative business practices, showcasing how companies can overcome market challenges that can benefit the poor and create social and economic impact in local communities. The event also highlighted the work that UNDP and the BCtA have initiated to promote public-private partnerships.

With participants from more than 70 private companies as well as from donor governments, academia, and NGOs, the Tokyo BCtA event featured presentations by four new Japanese members of the BCtA, Ajinomoto Co., ITOCHU Corporation, Ryohin Keikaku (MUJI) and Unicharm Corporation.

“Many of the world’s ecosystems are in serious decline, affecting most of all the poorest people who depend on the natural environment for their sustenance. In seeking solutions to these challenges, the innovation, technical expertise, and investment of the private sector is greatly needed in the reinvigorated global partnerships we must build for sustainable development,” said UNDP Administrator Helen Clark.

“UNDP is proud to host the Secretariat for the Business Call to Action because it represents precisely such a partnership. This global platform encourages companies to commit to innovative business solutions which are good for both their bottom line and for development,” said Helen Clark.

In developing countries, new Japanese BCtA member companies are taking important steps in support of sustainable agriculture, job creation, women’s empowerment, and capacity building for local workers, as highlighted by Helen Clark. 

“In UNDP and the broader UN system, we are keen to see even greater engagement of the private sector in human and sustainable development.  Indeed it would be hard to drive such development forward without business being on board,” concluded Clark

For the full speech of the Administrator, please refer:

About the Business Call to Action (BCtA):
Business Call to Action
 is a global initiative that challenges companies to develop inclusive business models that offer the potential for development impact along with commercial success. The initiative is the result of a partnership between the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), UK Department for International Development (DFID), US Agency for International Development (USAID), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the United Nations Global Compact, and the Clinton Global Initiative to meet the anti-poverty Millennium Development Goals by 2015. Companies report on progress toward commitments on an annual


Nov. 29, 2013