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Port Vila – May 20, 2015 – The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and External Trade of the Republic of Vanuatu, and the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) signed a Host Country Agreement and a Memorandum of Understanding on May 12, 2015. The Agreements will ensure the smooth functioning of GGGI operations in Vanuatu and facilitate ongoing cooperation between the Government of Vanuatu and GGGI to promote programs, research and joint activities in support of green growth in the Pacific island country.
“These agreements further demonstrate Vanuatu’s commitment to achieve its development goals through inclusive, sustainable growth, and strengthen GGGI’s ability to support Vanuatu’s green growth transition”, said Yvo de Boer, Director-General of GGGI.
Vanuatu became a GGGI member in November 2014, following participation and partnership in GGGI’s Small Island Developing States Scoping Project. Moving forward, GGGI will assist the Government of Vanuatu to strengthen the implementation capacity of its Department of Energy, and develop projects that utilize energy as a driver of inclusive green growth and employment in rural communities.
Based in Seoul, GGGI is an intergovernmental organization founded to support and promote a new model of economic growth known as “green growth.” The organization partners with countries to help them build economies that grow strongly and are more efficient and sustainable in the use of natural resources, less carbon intensive, and more resilient to climate change. GGGI’s experts are already working with governments around the world, building their capacity and working collaboratively on green growth policies that can impact the lives of millions.
Speaking in Bangkok, Thailand at the First Forum of Ministers & Environment Authorities of Asia Pacific, UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner noted the region is home to a number of international and regional institutions, including the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI), that have championed the green growth and green economy agenda.
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A three-day international conference on a wide range of regional and global issues including security, education and environment will begin on Jejudo Island on Wednesday, its organizers said.
Under the main theme of “Towards a New Asia of Trust and Harmony,” the 10th Jeju Forum for Peace and Prosperity is expected to bring together some 4,000 experts, government officials and politicians from some 50 countries.
Among the participants are former Australian Prime Minister John Howard, former Indonesian leader Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, former German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and former Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda.
Li Xiaolin, chair of the Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries, Former Canadian Prime Minister Joe Clark and Seoul’s Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se will also join the forum.
The annual forum consists of nearly 60 sessions to be held under five major categories: peace, prosperity, sustainability, diversity and competitiveness.
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SEOUL – May 19, 2015 – GGGI Council Chair and President of the Assembly, Dr. Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, addressed the United Nations Global Compact Korea Leaders forum today. In a crowd that included U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and GGGI Director-General Yvo de Boer, Dr. Yudhoyono spoke of the important role the private sector has to play in addressing climate-related issues.
Below is the full text of the speech.
Address by H.E. Dr. Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono
Indonesia’s Sixth President
At the UN Global Compact
Korea Leaders Summit 2015
Conrad Hotel, Seoul.
19 May 2015
Your Excellency, Mr Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations
Your Excellency Mr. Kyung-hwan Choi, Acting Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Korea
Ladies and Gentlemen,
It is always great to be back in Seoul, Republic of Korea, and I am pleased to join all of you here for the UNGC Korea Leaders Summit 2015.
I join others in this room in expressing my sincere appreciation to Secretary-General Ban-ki Moon for opening this summit, and for his energetic leadership.
I totally agree with him that in essence businesses have a critical role in the global efforts to achieve sustainable development goals in the Post-2015 Development Agenda.
Indeed, we live in a time where the private sector has the capacity to do a lot more than Governments not just to create wealth but to change the fate of societies. There can be no vision about the 21st century without a vision for business. And I do believe, from my endless conversations with business leaders, that the private sector is keen to do their part.
The role of business becomes ever more relevant because, despite the impressive gains over the last 15 years regarding the Millennium Development Goals, the global community continues to grapple with serious challenges.
In the absence of a global consensus, climate change remains a huge risk for the future of the human race. We are experiencing growing resource scarcity as a result of population growth and unrestrained consumption. We are witnessing the loss of biodiversity, forests and water resources.
These stress points, if left unchecked, threaten to undo all that we have achieved in recent years. They also severely inhibit social and economic growth in the years to come.
What is encouraging is that we the global community have clearly identified these challenges and have come together to address them to ensure a viable and vibrant environment for generations to come.
Since establishing the Global Compact, more and more businesses throughout the world are committing to this vision and are partnering with various stakeholders for sustainable development. I believe we now have grown to over 7,500 business signatories in more than 140 countries and 101 Local Networks.
The more these businesses succeed in main-streaming into their strategy the UN Global Compact’s 10 core principles in the areas of human rights, labor standards, anti-corruption and the environment, the more businesses can help foster sustainable development and more resilient societies everywhere.
There are those who may argue at first sight that these adjustments will take a toll on business. Well, change is usually not easy, but in the end it does pay off. After all, a good business is good for business.
Business, perhaps more so than Governments, are already contributing significantly to sustainable development through creative innovations that are helping to realize low-carbon economies and transition toward green growth.
As we all know, for green growth to fully materialize, countries need creative solutions – in financing, technological development and transfer, and development cooperation as well as sharing knowledge and experience. Business is uniquely positioned to deliver all this.
One key mandate of the Global Compact is to facilitate environments where business can effectively and transparently partner with green growth and development stakeholders to provide these services.
We are delighted that to date, Global Compact Local Networks have taken root in over 140 countries. They are making important contributions to building markets, combating corruption, safe-guarding the environment and ensuring social inclusion, and strengthening unprecedented partnerships and openness between business, governments, civil society, labor and the United Nations.
But I do believe we are only touching the tip of the iceberg. We can grow to a lot more than the present 7,500 business signatories. We need to push harder to raise awareness among businesses – especially micro, small and medium size businesses – about the Global Compact and how they too can join.
There is an ocean of opportunities and resources that remain untapped by business through the Global Compact to develop sustainable business strategy and operations around the world, and strengthen business collaboration and action in support of UN goals and issues.
On the cusp of the post-2015 development era, this summit is timely, and presents an important opportunity for business to further catalyze new strategies, partnerships and initiatives that will contribute to achieving sustainable development.
I am confident that all of us here will make the absolute most of this valuable opportunity.
Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,
In closing, I would like to take this opportunity to thank Acting Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Mr. Kyung-hwan Choi, the Government of the Republic of Korea, and the Global Compact Korea for organizing and hosting the UNGC Korea Leaders Summit 2015.
Time and again, Korea has shown its leadership toward achieving inclusive and sustainable development. Its hosting and continuous support of multiple international organizations, such as the Global Green Growth Institute, that are working to support this goal clearly demonstrates Korea’s commitment.
GGGI is a very good organization, to implement the Green Growth and Sustainable Development globally. That’s why I am here, as the Chair of GGGI.
I therefore have no doubt that our hosts will provide all that is necessary to ensure fruitful discussion and facilitate successful summit outcomes.
The U.N. Global Compact will host the “UNGC Korea Leaders Summit 2015” in Seoul next week, organizers said Thursday.
Around 400 officials across governments, corporations, and academia from both Korea and abroad are expected to attend, including U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Global Green Growth Institute Council chair Suslio Banbang Yudhoyono, and John Elkington, the cofounder of Volans.
This year’s summit plans to introduce the main UNGC initiatives as well as B4P (Business for Peace) to South Korean businesses and encourage them to be an active participant.
The summit will also hold a membership ceremony for the Korea Exchange on joining the U.N. Sustainable Stock Exchanges Initiative.
The UNGC, which holds a leaders summit once every three years, is an U.N. initiative with around 12,000 corporate members across 130 countries.
South Korea currently has 285 members. Members are expected to upkeep 10 principles on human rights, labor, environment and anticorruption.
Believing that corporations, which possess skills, workforce and resources, have the means to affect society on a substantial scale, The UNGC encourages businesses across the world to strive for sustainable development in terms of social, economic and environmental issues.
Original article from the Korea Herald here.