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Sunday, 12 October 2014

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UNCTAD investment forum:

Focus on sustainable development

Geneva: The heads of dozens of transnational corporations and other private sector stakeholders will meet Heads of State and Government authorities to launch major new initiatives in the area of investment for development at UNCTAD's World Investment Forum 2014 in the Palais des Nations, Geneva, from Monday to Thursday.

"Faced with common global economic, social and environmental challenges, the international community is defining a set of sustainable development goals to replace the Millennium Development Goals when they expire next year," UNCTAD Secretary-General Mukhisa Kituyi said.

"A key part of the new goals will be a robust funding framework. There is a clear role for the private sector to galvanise efforts to deliver on the new goals, which cannot be met with public money alone," he said.

"The core purpose of this year's World Investment Forum is to bring together public and corporate leaders to amplify the discussion about private sector involvement in sustainable development goals," Kituyi said.

"UNCTAD's World Investment Forum fills an important gap in global economic governance in the absence of any other international platform to discuss these issues," he said.

The forum, a gathering of more than 2,000 private and public sector representatives from the developing and developed world, will consider policy frameworks and conditions for investment at national and global levels to address sustainable development challenges.

There will be nearly 40 events including private sector-led sessions, ministerial round tables and the World Leaders Investment Summits. High-level participants include the President of Kenya, Uhuru Kenyatta, the Prime Minister of Jamaica, Portia Simpson-Miller, the Prime Minister of Madagascar, Roger Kolo, the President of Seychelles, JamesMichel, the President of Switzerland, Didier Burkhalter, interim Prime Minister of Tunisia, Mehdi Jomaa and dozens of foreign affairs, investment and trade ministers from around the world.

The Forum will be addressed by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and hosted by Dr. Kituyi.

Findings from UNCTAD's World Investment Report 2014 indicated that the total investment need in developing countries to deliver on the sustainable development goals will be $3.9 trillion per year. Present levels of investment leave an investment gap of some $2.5 trillion.

Transnational corporations in developed countries alone have more than $5 trillion lying 'idle' on their balance sheets - money that could be invested in building productive capacity, particularly in sustainable development sectors.

A number of deliverables for investing in sustainable development will be unveiled at the event. As the Forum is taking place in Geneva for the first time, attendance will also include a large number of leaders from the Swiss private sector.

 

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