Oslo, 31 October 2018: Today, a group of Nordic-based CEOs announced a joint initiative to speed up the realisation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Representatives from the group presented their shared ambitions to Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg during the 70th Nordic Council session in Oslo.

The group consists of the CEOs of Equinor, Hydro, the GSMA, Ìslandsbanki, Nokia, SAS, Swedbank, Telenor Group, Telia Company, Vestas and Yara International. The CEOs have joined forces to highlight the need for new business models that will drive the transition to a 21st century economy aligned with the ethical, social and environmental priorities of our time. The initiative also creates a platform for the Nordic Prime Ministers to engage directly with the CEOs on how to move from sustainability as a compliance exercise to purpose driven companies. A key objective is to explore ways to deliver more impact through collaboration and responsible business practices.

“To be successful in the coming decades, companies must be part of the response to the great challenges facing the world. We are inspired and guided in our activities by the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals and believe collaboration between governments and companies committed to long-term sustainable value creation will help make change happen,” says Equinor CEO, Eldar Sætre.

Anchored in business strategies
The CEOs have committed to aligning their business strategies with the UN SDGs and to exploring opportunities for collaboration. The arena will facilitate experience exchange, shared learning and explore how the companies can best measure effects and maximize impact of their efforts.

Joint letter to the Nordic Prime Ministers
In the early stages of forming the initiative, the CEOs sent a joint letter to the Nordic Prime Ministers in June 2018 announcing their ambitions. This resulted in today’s meeting with Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg, who is also a co-chair of the UN’s Global SDG Advocate group, during Nordic Council’s 70thjoint session. In the meeting, the CEOs presented the shared ambitions on behalf of the initiative and an updated joint letter. The group also discussed the importance of global trade and public-private partnerships as vital preconditions for realizing the UN SDGs.

Read the letter from the Nordic CEOs for a Sustainable Future to the Nordic Prime Ministers and their individual statements here.

This article was originally published by Equinor, Hydro, the GSMA, Ìslandsbanki, Nokia, SAS, Swedbank, Telenor Group, Telia Company, Vestas and Yara International