Time for action – Global Compact has a unique role to play

15/06/2010 / Kaj

Ten years have passed since Global Compact, the UN initiative to bolster companies’ commitment to vital social issues, began. Since then, 7,000 companies in more than 135 countries have ratified Global Compact’s 10 principles. Between the 23rd and 25th of June, more than 1,000 CEOs, ministers, UN officials and leading NGOs will meet in New York with an agenda focusing on three crucial areas:
– Setting the Agenda
– Leading the Change
– Achieving Development
In the shadow of the discussion that business as usual is no longer the solution to the problems facing society, the message from New York could have a great significance. Both message and action are imperative.
Global Compact is needed to give a voice to the ever-increasing groups of companies that have understood that it is no longer a question of business as usual. Every day we read about governments and companies that mismanage money by using it on something other that what it was budgeted for. It is my hope that we get a powerful message from New York on the most crucial issues surrounding Climate Justice and Corruption.
Without climate justice between the developing and developed worlds, no long-term trust is created to lead us to a new climate agreement. Despite all the good examples of local initiatives, the one thing that lays the foundation for success — trust — must still be found among a strong leadership. The global efforts for sustainable development will then receive the support it needs today.
Kaj Embrén
PS Respect was set up together with The Body Shop’s founders Gordon and Anita Roddick ten years ago. We have so far contributed with the Business Leaders Initiative on Climate Change (BLICC) and the Business Leadership on Human Rights (BLIHR), as well as a number of business programmes in the climate field. Among the most successful implementation program is in practise by measuring greenhouse gas emissions (Svante). Read more at www.respect.se. See the interview with Fred Dubee about the UN Global Compact at www.speroecc.se

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