Geneva, 2 October 2019 – In late September 2019, leaders from a broad range of sectors and geographies gathered in New York around the opening of the 74th session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA).

The week is not only an integral part of the UN calendar, bringing together world leaders to kick off debate and discussion around key global issues, but has also come to represent an important landmark for wider stakeholder groups, including business, to convene and advance solutions to some of the world’s most pressing sustainability challenges.

The landmark events this year were the Climate Action Summit, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Summit, and the High-Level Dialogue on Financing for Development – accompanied as every year by a myriad of public and private events.

From a business perspective, the UNGA continues to consolidate its position as an essential opportunity for business leaders to engage in valuable dialogues across a wide spectrum of issues that sit at the heart of the SDGs, and to explore innovative new collaborations and partnerships.

The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) and its member companies again played an active role across a variety of important dialogues during this year’s assembly. We were pleased to see over 50 WBCSD member companies represented at top executive level in New York. The Council and its members were prominently positioned across the week to advocate the business voice across a wide range of topics: Climate & Energy, Food & Nature, SDGs advocacy, Redefining Value and the Future of Work.

In an interview with Kasmira Jefford on CNNMoney Switzerland, WBCSD President and CEO Peter Bakker shared his key takeaways from the week.
“Business had a positive series of action-oriented announcements, science launched their planetary emergency plans and the youth were there, protesting, and really making the case for urgent and clear action.”

“Companies from around the world are stepping up. They understand that their supply chains, operations and sales are global, as much as the problems we are facing in the world with climate change, the destruction of nature or social unrest… Business needs to do what it does best: to innovate and set up action plans to get to a 1.5 degree world. But not one company can solve this challenge alone, business needs to work together to drive up ambition and action.”

Watch the interview to find out more. 

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