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Press release content from Globe Newswire. The AP news staff was not involved in its creation.

New UN Global Compact strategy aims to accelerate business action to achieve Sustainable ...

January 20, 2021 GMT

New York, NY, Jan. 19, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- UNITED NATIONS, New York, 19 January 2021 — UN Secretary-General, António Guterres, Chair of the Board of the UN Global Compact, today announced a new three-year strategic plan to increase and accelerate corporate sustainability and principled business.

“The United Nations Global Compact is uniquely positioned to support companies on their journey to align their practices to a sustainable and inclusive future. The Ten Principles on human rights, labour, the environment and anti-corruption offer a blueprint for businesses seeking to be part of the collective effort to build back stronger from the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said.


“Now is the time to scale up the global business community’s contributions to the 2030 Agenda and the implementation of the Paris Agreement on climate change. That is the overarching goal of the Global Compact’s strategic plan for 2021 through 2023.”

Sanda Ojiambo, CEO & Executive Director, UN Global Compact said: “More must be done by businesses globally to accelerate corporate sustainability and responsible business practice. Our strategy and ambition are to grow and take our participants on a journey of demonstrated continuous improvement in the impact that they create.”

With the pandemic and ongoing climate crisis undoing much of the progress the world has achieved since adopting the SDGs in 2015, the new UN Global Compact strategy calls on the global business community to increase its contribution to achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement. The strategy outlines five key shifts to boost business action and impact:

  • Accountable companies: UN Global Compact will strive to move its participant companies faster and farther than others in demonstrating progress on corporate sustainability and responsible business practices through specific, measurable targets within an enhanced reporting framework.
  • Balanced growth of local and regional networks: Local UN Global Compact networks will be empowered to effect change and build more dynamic national ecosystems for business sustainability. This effort should lead to the launch of new national and regional Global Compact networks with a focus on the Global South, China and the U.S.
  • Measurable impact in prioritised areas: UN Global Compact programmes, co-created with local networks and delivered through them, focus on the Ten Principles to lead and shape action on five Sustainable Development Goals: Gender Equality (SDG 5), Decent Work and Economic Growth (SDG 8), Climate Action (SDG 13), Peace Justice and Strong Institutions (SDG 16) and Partnerships (SDG 17) while adapting to each country’s unique context.
  • Harnessing the collective action of SMEs: Accounting for most of the world’s businesses and employers, UN Global Compact will establish targeted and cross-cutting SME programmes that leverage digital tools and value chains to reach scale.
  • Strong and active engagement with the UN and its partners: UN Global Compact will enhance collaboration at the global and national levels with UN agencies and UN country teams to accelerate its reach and its ability to advance responsible business practice globally.


“Our goal is to raise expectations of how businesses will embed all Ten Principles. These are intrinsic to a company and serve as the enabler for contributions towards achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement.  The five key shifts articulated in this strategy reflect our ambitions for global growth, prioritization and impact at scale,” Sanda Ojiambo said. “Together, we will be One Global Compact uniting business for a better world.”

About the United Nations Global Compact

As a special initiative of the UN Secretary-General, the United Nations Global Compact is a call to companies everywhere to align their operations and strategies with Ten Principles in the areas of human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption.  Our ambition is to accelerate and scale the global collective impact of business by upholding the Ten Principles and delivering the Sustainable Development Goals through accountable companies and ecosystems that enable change.

With more than 12,000 companies and 3,000 non-business signatories based in over 160 countries, and 69 Local Networks, the UN Global Compact is the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative. One Global Compact uniting business for a better world.

For more information, follow @globalcompact on social media and visit our website at


Media contacts

Dan Thomas: +1 917 225 1913, Email:

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Dan Thomas United Nations Global Compact (212) 907-1301