President Maithripala Sirisena delivers the keynote at the Commonwealth Business Forum in London yesterday (18 April)
See full speech on Page 8
President Maithripala Sirisena yesterday called upon the business communities and civil societies to come together with the states to ensure the successful implementation of the 2030 agenda for sustainable development.
Delivering the keynote address at the Commonwealth Business Forum on the third day of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) 2018 in London, President Sirisena called upon everyone at the forum to join hands with the Commonwealth countries as well as others to bring prosperity with best business practices that will promote social responsibility and ensure social inclusiveness.
He emphasised that to see the successful implementation of the 2030 agenda for sustainable development adopted in 2015 in order to eradicate poverty, to address climate change, and to build peaceful and inclusive societies,the governments, the business and civil societies, and communities must come together.
The President noted that while in Sri Lanka, Heads of State and Government are personally leading these efforts with inclusive and sustainable business models that will lead to sustainable development, especially when projected towards the longer term.
The President noted that good business practices would be a catalyst for peace and good governance. It should reflect social responsibilities and uphold the rule of law with zero tolerance for corruption. Such practices will enable inclusive growth and common prosperity.
“It is encouraging to see an increase in public-private partnerships to deliver the much-needed infrastructure in attaining the Sustainable Development Goals.”
The President took the opportunity to request all attendees, as socially responsible partners, to consider as part of their business models to include technical and financial contributions to the implementation phase of the SDGs.
“Real alignment of business, society and government will depend on these stakeholders aiming to achieve cohesive social responsibility for the best satisfaction of the people,” he said.
President Sirisena noted that the world today is united in its efforts to create cleaner, greener and sustainable energy, and there is no standard approach for implementing the SDGs, and that each country decides its own path. However, the approach led by our countries should be people centred.
The Government, as a means of advancing the implementation process, created a special Ministry for Sustainable Development, integrating the SDGs to the overall national policies.
The President said his Government’s “Blue-Green” economic plan will ensure the full utilisation of the ocean and other natural resources of the country in an environmentally friendly and sustainable manner. “Through this economic strategy, Sri Lanka hopes to become a role model for addressing the best practices,” President Sirisena said.