UN Global Compact Leaders Summit Sets a High-Water Mark for Corporate Engagement on World Priorities

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UN Global Compact Leaders Summit Sets a High-Water Mark for Corporate Engagement on World Priorities

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Friday, September 20, 2013 - 6:30pm

New York, September 20, 2013 /3BL Media/ – CEOs endorsed a new “architecture of engagement” unveiled earlier in the day by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, at the conclusion of the UN Global Compact Leaders Summit.

The milestone comes at a time of accelerating alignment by businesses around the world of their core, long-term interests with the success of societies, according to Georg Kell, Executive Director of the UN Global Compact.

According to the Global Corporate Sustainability Report 2013, released ahead of the Summit, 52 percent of corporate boards participating in the UN Global Compact address corporate sustainability, and 65 percent of CEOs have developed policies and strategies for a more sustainable operation.

Also announced by the UN Secretary-General at the conference – attended by more than 1,000 top executives and representatives from Government, civil society and labour – was the launch of three new issue platforms for business support of education, agriculture, and peace. They complement existing UN Global Compact platforms on children’s rights, women’s empowerment, climate and energy, water, and anti-corruption.

On 19 September, the opening day of the Summit, 30 special events brought leaders together on a wide range of issues.

A new Business Partnership Hub to match businesses with potential partners in order to facilitate collective action in support of UN goals was launched.

At a 20 September UN Private Sector Forum 2013: Africa, chaired by the Secretary-General, businesses announced 25 material commitments to progress on the continent.

Speaking to the press ahead of the Forum, Elias Masilela, CEO of the Public Investment Corporation (South Africa),CEO of the Public Investment Corporation (South Africa), said that the Global Compact’s new architecture for business engagement is highly suited to the challenges of African business as it moves forward. “At this juncture, the path of the Global Compact needs to be celebrated and embraced,” he said.

At the closing plenary of the Leaders Summit, UN Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson told executives: “You have made it clear in the last two days that business is ready to take a major role in advancing UN priorities.

“Now we have a road map,” he said. “The Secretary-General presented a new business engagement architecture. This can be our guide for scaling up and making transformative impact.”

About the UN Global Compact
Launched in 2000, the United Nations Global Compact is both a policy platform and a practical framework for companies that are committed to sustainability and responsible business practices. As a multi-stakeholder leadership initiative, it seeks to align business operations and strategies with ten universally accepted principles in the areas of human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption, and to catalyze actions in support of broader UN goals. With 8,000 corporate signatories in 145 countries, it is the world’s largest voluntary corporate sustainability initiative. www.unglobalcompact.org

About the UN Global Compact Leaders Summit
Chaired by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, the UN Global Compact Leaders Summit 2013: Architects of a Better World (19-20 September) brings together chief executives with leaders from civil society, Government and the United Nations to unveil a new global architecture for corporate sustainability. As the Millennium Development Goals 2015 deadline approaches, the Summit will set the stage for business to shape and advance the post-2015 development agenda – putting forward an architecture for business to contribute to global priorities, such as climate change, water, food, equality, decent jobs, and education, at unprecedented levels. www.leaderssummit2013.org

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Public Affairs and Media Relations

UN Global Compact
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Keywords: Events, Media & Communications | Global Compact | Leaders Summit 2013 | Responsible Business & Employee Engagement | Social Impact & Volunteering | sustainability | united nations