• Nuno Moreira da Cruz

INTEGRATING SDGS INTO BUSINESS STRATEGY

SDG #01- NO POVERTY

In 2015, The United Nations have agreed the 17 SDG (Sustainable Development Goals), and 169 individual targets, which define the aspirations and goals for 2030, in order to solve the critical social and environmental challenges our Planet is facing. This has been agreed by Governments and it is now time for Businesses to step forward and put sustainability at the heart of their corporate strategies and cultures.

As UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres described it “We are not moving SDGs fast enough. When one looks at what is happening in the global economy, we are moving more or less in the right direction in the majority of them (SDGs), but too slow. Business leaders have a very important role in mobilizing civil society, business communities and all other relevant actors”.

There are already a number of companies redefining their strategies around the key SDG for their industries, and great examples of business partnership (like the recent example of the “global Alliance to ban plastics”) but much more is needed.

On a weekly basis I will be referring to each of the SDGs: facts, targets, and how could companies be engaged. I will start today with SDG#1.

Facts: Globally poverty has been reducing, since 1990, nearly 1.1. billion people have escaped poverty (China playing a large part in this). There are currently 767 million people living below the international poverty line of $1.90 per day.

Targets: cut absolute poverty rate to 3% by 2030 vs 10.7% in 2013 and to eradicate extreme poverty for all people everywhere.

Companies engagement: most of the specific targets on SDG#1 have to do with government action and policies. But SDG 1.4 seems to be something where companies could take action. It states: "By 2030, ensure that all men and women, in particular the poor and the vulnerable, have equal rights to economic resources,as well as access to basic services,ownership and control over land and other forms of property, inheritance,natural resources, appropriate new technology and financial services, including microfinance". According to a recent Morgan Stanley’ study, industries like Banks, Insurance, Telecoms, Utilities could adapt their products and services to help achieving SDG#1 “No Poverty”.