United Nations Working with the Business Community

In order to intensify the effort to advance the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the UN is exploring financial solutions for the Sustainable Development Goals. This includes examining the transformations needed in the financial sector that will encourage implementation.

To collect these resources and up-scale their UN landmark agreements, member nations have insisted on the vital and central role of the “private sector”. Investing in sustainable and resilient infrastructure is a pre-requisite for achieving these lofty financial goals. To bridge the global infrastructure gap, including the $1.5 trillion annual gap in developing countries, member nations will facilitate development of sustainable, accessible and resilient quality infrastructure in developing countries through enhanced financial support.

At a global level, the embrace of partnerships with the business sector brings with it a number of risks and side-effects that have not received careful consideration. Efforts to diversify funding sources have encouraged a turn to the private sector, often without fully acknowledging the risks that may be involved.

There remains a growing concern about the UN’s ability and commitment to provide an enabling environment for human rights and sustainability and to ensure that “crowding in” corporate funding is not “crowding out” publicly accountable governance.

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