Business Partnerships and Solutions for SDGs
Business Partnerships & Solutions for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is a United Nation Joint Programme (UNJP) that brings together four UN agencies with the aim to prepare and capacitate private sector partners in Albania for the implementation of the SDGs in their business models, thus directly supporting Albania’s efforts to contribute to the largest global agenda that exists today – Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development.
The Project will help Albania translate the ambitious Agenda 2030 into action. To achieve this, the project will employ a participatory approach through which key stakeholders from both public and private sectors will engage in the process. This will entail several lines of action: a) analysis, roadmaps, and policy guidance; b) engaging, sensitizing and motivating the private sector to embrace SDGs and embed them in their businesses; c) explore new partnerships and business opportunities with Swedish counterparts: and d) promoting the SDGs and good practices to the wider business community.
Private sector-related activities will engage businesses, but also economic development support institutions and organisations, such as chambers of commerce, business associations, investment promotion agencies, local and regional development agencies, technology parks and business accelerators. Companies, as well as economic development support institutions from Sweden will be engaged to share their experiences and plans relevant to addressing global challenges and contributing to the Agenda 2030.
The focus of SDG work in Albania will be placed on two main sectors – agri-processing and textile, both selected for their significant economic impact on the country’s overall economic performance and employment.
Therefore, the focus of this Project will be on the importance of the private sector role in this context, including in terms of their social responsibility, green businesses and greening businesses, as well as innovation and new business models, new business opportunities and markets. Profit-driven nature of companies will be kept in mind, figuring out ways to present SDGs principles and values as future business opportunities that will enable companies to grow and contribute to development priorities.
The project is funded by the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA) and implemented by UNDP (lead), FAO, ILO and UNIDO in Albania.
Albania’s Small Business Act Profile confirms that in order to increase the number of jobs in the private sector, it is essential to scale up the institutional capacity of business support services that aim to improve access to finance and offer support for scaling-up business operations, and to facilitate the internationalization of firms. The continued lack of diversification, including in terms of export destinations, contributes to Albania’s economic vulnerability.
Given Albania’s small domestic economy, integration into the global economy could be a crucial growth path, in this respect Albania could intensify efforts to strengthen the quality infrastructure necessary for the free movement of good, enabling Albanian firms to place goods on the market in line with rules that are in compliance with the EU single market.
The overall objective of this Project is to raise the awareness among private sector actors about SDGs and, in particular ways business will benefit and contribute from their implementation in Albania. SDGs provide a critical window of opportunity to rethink the role of the private sector as a key factor in the recovery process. In addition to offering a wealth of expertise and disruptive innovation, businesses will help mobilize much needed capital in support of the SDGs, while reorienting their strategies to create value not just for their shareholders, but the society at large.
The Project will seek to achieve this relying on the Swedish experience and investment focus and will facilitate business to business cooperation while at the same time supporting the private sector in delivery and monitoring of social and environmental impact. The reason why Sweden is seen as a model is because Sweden has been in the frontline of efforts to link the SDGs with the work of the private sector. Making known good practices from Sweden will lead to better understanding and engagement on the SDGs and help identify opportunities to co-design and pilot solutions in the two selected sectors.
20 companies exposed to SDGs positive business practices.
The project is organized in three main outputs:
- Increased awareness and understanding of SDG positive business practices and sector review to support roadmap for SDG/EU green agenda opportunities.
- Private sector businesses are aware of Economic, Social and Governance (ESG) benefits of adopting Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) principles and practices.
- Design schemes to introduce Economic, Social and Environmental (ESG) benefits of adopting Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) principles and practices in agri-processing and textile sectors.