7 September 2022
UN Global Compact Unveils Strategy to Maximize China’s Contribution to SDGs
Photo by Hanson Lu on Unsplash
story highlights

The ‘UN Global Compact China Strategy’ identifies seven areas where China could have a “profound impact” on sustainable development by engaging Chinese stakeholders domestically and engaging Chinese stakeholders to benefit the world.

Its five key enablers are membership strategy, stakeholder engagement, fundraising strategy, marketing and communications strategy, and organizational development.

The UN Global Compact published its China strategy seeking “to unlock the potential of business and other stakeholders to maximize their impact on the SDGs and contribute to sustainable development in China and the rest of the world.” The document recognizes China’s local priorities while striving to align itself with the UN Global Compact’s Ten Principles and global ambition.

The ‘UN Global Compact China Strategy’ highlights that as the world’s largest developing country, China is home to 143 of the world’s 500 largest companies, as well as to 44 million+ small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). At the same time, the Sustainable Development Report 2021 by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) ranks China 57th globally in terms of sustainable development. The strategy argues that, given the size of its economy, foreign investment, and trade, China can have a “profound impact” on sustainable development at home and abroad.

Emphasizing the increasing UN Global Compact membership rates among Chinese businesses, the strategy acknowledges potential for further engagement to help Chinese companies “on their sustainability journey.” The strategy identifies seven key areas covering the UN Global Compact’s Ten Principles, to maximize impact on the SDGs:

  • Combat climate change, with benefits for SDG 13 (climate action), as well as SDGs 14 (life below water), 11 (sustainable cities and communities), and 15 (life on land);
  • Reduce inequality, advancing SDG 5 (gender equality), alongside SDGs 6 (clean water and sanitation), 10 (reduced inequalities), 1 (no poverty), 2 (zero hunger), and 4 (quality education);
  • Take collective actions against corruption to further SDG 16 (peace, justice and strong institutions);
  • Advance decent work, contributing to SDG 8 (decent work and economic growth), as well as SDGs 12 (responsible consumption and production) and 3 (good health and well-being);
  • Engage private sector through the Belt and Road Initiative to accelerate the SDGs, to help advance SDGs 17 (partnerships for the Goals), 9 (industry, innovation and infrastructure), and 11;
  • Strengthen South-South cooperation through China-Africa business collaboration on the SDGs, contributing to SDGs 13 (climate action), 7 (affordable and clean energy), and 1; and
  • Foster business innovation and SDG partnerships through the Global Development Initiative, in support of SDGs 17, 7, 9, and 1.

The strategy’s five key enablers are membership strategy, stakeholder engagement, fundraising strategy, marketing and communications strategy, and organizational development.

Through its UN mandate and “recognition for progress, broader social and economic impact, tailored capacity building, and sustainable business growth,” the UN Global Compact is the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative. Its Ten Principles span the areas of:

  • Human rights: 1) Businesses should support and respect the protection of internationally proclaimed human rights and 2) make sure that they are not complicit in human rights abuses;
  • Labor: 3) Businesses should uphold the freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining, 4) the elimination of all forms of forced and compulsory labor, 5) the effective abolition of child labor, and 6) the elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation;
  • Environment: 7) Businesses should support a precautionary approach to environmental challenges, 8) undertake initiatives to promote greater environmental responsibility, and 9) encourage the development and diffusion of environmentally friendly technologies; and
  • Anti-corruption: 10) Businesses should work against corruption in all its forms, including extortion and bribery.

The ‘UN Global Compact China Strategy’ was released in June 2022. [Publication: UN Global Compact China Strategy] [Publication Landing Page]

related posts

WEF Launches Partnerships on Circular Economy, Oceans, Skills Development

WEF Launches Partnerships on Circular Economy, Oce...

2030 Vision Partnership Will Advance Use of Digital Technology in SDGs

2030 Vision Partnership Will Advance Use of Digita...