Inclusive business can play a key role in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals

Inclusive business can play a key role in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals

11 May 2016 – The “Unleashing Inclusive Business for the Sustainable Development Goals” roundtable was held in Hanoi to discuss how inclusive business can be leveraged to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Vietnam.

The event was hosted by the Business Call to Action (BCtA) – a United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) global platform showcasing the private sector's contribution to the SDGs through inclusive business – in collaboration with SNV, the Inclusive Business Accelerator (IBA), the Partnering Initiative (TPI) and Business Fights Poverty.

Ms. Louis Chamberlain, Country Director, UNDP Vietnam and Dr. Ho Sy Hung, General Director, Agency for Enterprise Development, Ministry of Planning and Investment gave the opening remarks at the event. The participating organisations included: state agencies such as Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) and the Vietnam Business Council for Sustainable Development (VBCSD); international institutions such as the Asian Development Bank (ADB), United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the UK Department for International Development (DFID), Netherlands Embassy in Vietnam, Embassy of Finland in Vietnam; and many large corporations engaging in inclusive business such as Viettel, Traphaco, TH Milk, etc.

The event provided valuable insights into (a) key opportunity areas for the private sector to tap into new markets by engaging in inclusive business; (b) how the momentum around SDG implementation can be leveraged to drive a better enabling environment for inclusive business at the national level; and (c) what can be done at a sector level to drive collaboration that builds enabling ecosystems for inclusive businesses in order to accelerate the achievement of the SDGs.

The event was divided into two parts:

  • A high-level plenary that introduced the SDGs and the business case for companies to engage in inclusive business. The plenary provided examples from leading companies in Vietnam and discussed how the government, private sector and other stakeholders can join forces to better leverage inclusive business for the SDGs.

  • Inclusive Business and SDGs workshop that discussed how inclusive businesses can align with the SDGs. The workshop provided an opportunity for networking and knowledge exchange (also through sector level table discussions).

unleashing inclusive business for the Sustainable Development Goals roundtable

Inclusive businesses integrate people living at the base of the economic pyramid into their core business value chains as producers, suppliers, employees, distributors and customers. They help provide better livelihoods and access to key services such as financial services, productive technologies, healthcare, skills building, energy and affordable housing.

As Ms. Minja Nieminen, representative of the Business Call to Action said: “The role of the private sector will be key for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030 – inclusive business provides an opportunity for the private sector to tap into and build new markets, simultaneously contributing to the SDGs. We look forward to highlighting the commitments of leading inclusive businesses in Vietnam - from the 155+ companies worldwide that have joined the Business Call to Action global inclusive business platform”.