The new Sustainable Development Goals

The new Sustainable Development Goals

The agreement on a new sustainable development agenda expresses a consensus by all governments that the SDGs can only be achieved with involvement of the private sector working alongside governments, parliaments and other institutions both local and global.

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The SDGs are an ambitious plan of action for people, planet and prosperity. They are universal, applying to all nations and people, seeking to tackle inequality and leave nobody behind. They are wide ranging including ending poverty and hunger, ensuring sustainable consumption and production, and promoting peaceful and inclusive societies. 

The agreement on a new sustainable development agenda expresses a consensus by all governments that the SDGs can only be achieved with involvement of the private sector working alongside governments, parliaments, the UN system and other international institutions, local authorities, civil society, the scientific and academic community, and all people.

Hence, governments in the post-2015 declaration “…call on all businesses to apply their creativity and innovation to solving sustainable development challenges”.

Each and every SDG provides an opportunity for business and two are worth highlighting as cross-cutting themes:

  • SDG 12 focuses on production and consumption and includes a specific target on “adopting sustainable business practices and reporting”
  • SDG 17 includes two targets on multistakeholder partnerships to ensure this attracts sufficient focus.

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