Magdy Martínez-Solimán: Statement delivered at Big Data, Impact Management & the SDGs: Facilitating Private Sector Investment in Asia for the SDGs

Sep 22, 2017

Honourable Guests,   Fellow UN Colleagues,   Ladies and Gentlemen,

It is my great pleasure to welcome you here at the UN General Assembly, and specifically to this High Level Event organised by United Nations Social Impact Fund (UNSIF). A key priority for the UN is to accelerate more private sector capital in a way that intentionally supports the Sustainable Development Goals. UNSIF is a valuable enabler of that change.

I would also like to thank UN Global Pulse for supporting today’s event, and commend them on their ground-breaking work in helping us interpret progress towards the SDGs. I also look forward to the panel discussion later with esteemed private sector experts and academics in impact investing.

A common theme at this year’s General Assembly has been to explore practical ways in which the UN can help unlock the trillions of dollars in private sector finance, which we need to successfully deliver the SDGs within the ambitious timetable of the Agenda 2030.

The growing and promising niche of impact investing is a vanguard for how the private sector can intentionally create positive impacts. The term “impact” can be seen as a convenient shorthand for the 17 Sustainable Development Goals – and impact investors, by their own definition, intentionally create outcomes that are positive for society and the environment. The returns they target are much more than just financial. These experiences can guide us as we re-imagine development finance for the SDGs.

Impact investing is no longer an experiment – it has proven itself over decades as a mode of finance that can do good for society by also doing well financially. Currently there is $114 Billion of commercial capital under management that self-identifies as impact investing.

And it is growing at an annual rate of around 20%.

Agenda 2030 for the SDGs is only possible though fruitful partnerships with the private sector – I welcome your enthusiasm to work with us, and I echo it from our side too.

I hope the discussion today is a catalyst for more collaboration on this topic. I look forward to hearing your vision, leadership and progress made on this important agenda. 

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