Dear ESBN members and colleagues welcome back to the ESBN General Meeting.
This afternoon, we would like to share the outcomes of the Executive Council meeting held earlier today.
Firstly, I am happy to report that despite the challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, we have not let the specter of climate crisis slip from our sights.
The ESBN, its task forces and members, heeding the crisis at hand, have drafted a “Green Deal for Business” that serves as a roadmap towards a low carbon future.
Paired with the outcomes of COP 26 that called for help to lower emissions globally, ESBN is well-suited to build coalitions of support, including developed countries, financial institutions and those with technical know-how.
The Green Deal for Business will encourage companies to go greener, work to decarbonize both their own company operations and supply chains, mitigate other negative environmental impacts, and act responsibly towards workers and communities.
It will do so by improving social safety nets, speeding up decarbonization, increasing energy efficiency, reducing pollution, increasing digitalization and ensuring livable cities.
The Green Deal, an ESBN and private sector initiative, highlights that business must and does play a pivotal role to attain the Sustainable Development Goals, Paris Agreement and other key international instruments and obligations.
It is complementary to public sector action, noting that the private sector and the public sector must work together. Neither can go it alone, and ESCAP is the regional cooperation platform to ensure that all stakeholders come together to address the biggest challenge of our time.
The foremost platform to showcase the Green Deal for Business is the Asia-Pacific Business Forum, APBF. The high-level flagship event of the APBF will make a call for action to address the climate crisis.
The APBF will unveil the Green Deal for Business Declaration to empower all to take real action towards a low carbon future. Words we hear often but have yet to heed. As the Prime Minister of Thailand said in his statement at COP 26, “there is no planet B.”
Globally, we need to put our differences aside now and create a green future through a just transition that leaves no one behind.
Thank you very much.