The UN Global Compact and Global Compact Network Kenya launch the Africa Strategy to accelerate principled business, climate action and the Sustainable Development Goals
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Nairobi, 22 February 2022 - The United Nations Global Compact, the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative, together with Global Compact Network Kenya, today announced their new Africa Strategy to advance corporate sustainability and scale up responsible business practices across the continent in support of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Aiming to accelerate and scale the global collective impact of business, the UN Global Compact Africa Strategy 2021-2023 aims to galvanize large and small companies across Africa to uphold the Ten Principles. The UN Global Compact principles-based approach means that businesses operate in ways that, at a minimum, meet fundamental responsibilities in the areas of human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption.
Speaking during the launch of the Africa strategy, UN Global Compact CEO and Executive Director, Ms. Sanda Ojiambo said: “We believe that doing right by the environment, labour, human rights, and anti-corruption will drive competitive advantage and commercial success for business. However, this ambition cannot be achieved alone. We must work in close partnership with business, financial institutions, governments, civil society, and the UN. Collaboration is key.”
The UN Global Compact Africa Strategy seeks to engage and recruit the top 100 companies across the continent, while also expanding its value propositions to SMEs, a crucial part of Africa’s economy. By 2023, the UN Global Compact aims to have reached one-third of African businesses with more than $25 million in turnover and increased its SME membership by 50 per cent.
Speaking during the event, Principal Secretary State Department for Trade and Enterprise Development Ministry of Industrialization, Amb. Johnson Weru said, "We have a mandate to create a competitive and sustainable private sector by ensuring an enabling Policy, Legal and Regulatory Environment, and also, working with other agencies, ensuring that the requisite infrastructure is in place to facilitate business."
At the event, UN Global Compact Board Member, Ms. Flora Mutahi said, "Global Compact Network Kenya will be equipped to create richer experiences for business participants of all sizes, from the largest companies to SMEs, and engage a growing number of external partners."
The UN Global Compact will develop a customized program offering that caters to the needs of African companies of all sizes, prioritizing five thematic areas: Gender Equity, Decent Work and Economic Growth, Climate Action, Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions and Partnerships.
The strategy was released today during a breakfast meeting attended by over 60 Kenyan business leaders.