Budapest, 23 February 2021: Nearly 100 CEOs from the Hungarian business community gathered at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Business Council for Sustainable Development in Hungary (BCSDH) to define the course of business leadership for sustainability for the decade to come. WBCSD President & CEO Peter Bakker was invited to present the global business perspective and the way forward.
During its AGM last year, BCSDH hosted a dialogue on Vision 2050, diving into roles and opportunities for business to help unlock the transformations that are needed to allow over 9 billion people to live well, within planetary boundaries by mid-century. Today, during his keynote, Peter Bakker shared the urgency to act and presented a sneak peek of WBCSD’s Vision 2050 refresh that defines a roadmap for priorities for the next critical decade: “We have less than ten years to get the pathways of transformation on track for a net-zero and nature-positive economy. Moreover, the pandemic and growing social unrest around the world have made it clear that this vision can only be realized if we put people and communities at the center of our thinking and actions. Leaders will be the key differentiators for success or failure”. Vision 2050 will be officially launched on 25 March, during an event open to the public.
Last year, at the initiation of BCSDH, Hungary hosted the WBCSD Central and Eastern European Regional Consultation, where business leaders, regional leaders and leaders of professional organizations discussed the role of companies in the implementation of Vision 2050. In line with the results of this work, Peter Bakker highlighted the following during the 2021 BCSDH AGM: “Sustainability is no longer an ancillary factor, but it is placed squarely at the heart of meetings with stakeholders. We need to act faster, together, to lead the critical transformations in the coming decade. Business plays a central role in driving and delivering the actions, innovations, products and services that are required to transform our economic systems”.
BCSDH, which now counts 102 leading Hungarian member companies, defined its goals for 2021 as supporting its members and the business sector to achieve climate-neutral operations, to meet biodiversity restoration objectives, to promote inclusion, equality and diversity, and to create a corporate culture and way of operating that maximizes respect for business human rights and involves the highest levels of transparency.
President of BCSDH Attila Chikán Jr. said: “2020 was marked by the dynamic development of BCSDH, and the membership of important financial players continued to increase the strength of the organization. In 2021, we need to find ways to create more resilient, inclusive, and sustainable economic growth. We must step up the fight for climate protection and adaptation, we must achieve carbon neutrality, and we must give priority to creating a net zero-emission economy and a net zero-emission Hungary”.
In light of this, the focus of BCSDH's work in 2021 will be the Race to Zero program, the primary goal of which is to facilitate and accelerate the process by which the Hungarian economy can become carbon-neutral by 2050, thus taking an important step towards stopping climate change. To facilitate this, BCSDH has established the Net Zero Advisory Board. The aim of the Board is to enable wide-ranging cooperation, help coordinate programs, to scale up impact, and accelerate the related processes. This can be achieved because the program also includes scientific, regulatory, and economic actors.
Director of BCSDH Irén Márta added: “The members of the Board are renowned professionals who, through their expertise and recognition in their respective fields, can make a real impact together. This special cross-sectoral partnership aims to give greater impetus to the transition to a carbon-neutral economy by exploiting synergies”.
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