Magdy Martínez-Solimán: Statement at the 5th Executive Council meeting of the Istanbul International Center for Private Sector in Development (IICPSD)

Nov 28, 2016

Dear members of the Executive Council, colleagues and friends, it is a great pleasure to be here to welcome you to the fifth regular meeting of the Istanbul International Center for Private Sector in Development Executive Council.

At last year’s meeting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) had just been launched. Since then, we have moved ahead swiftly to kick start implementation at the global, regional and country levels. Achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development means going beyond business as usual. Sustainable development requires a range of government and cross-sectoral approaches, and new partnerships.

I would like to thank you for your guidance and commitment, which have allowed the Center to play a visible role in providing a strategic vision and supporting the private sector and foundations to become key actors in our collective efforts to achieve sustainable development.

In 2016, the Center continued to advance and design projects with significant impact and high-level visibility.

Following a successful collaboration with the G20 under the Turkish Presidency’s leadership in 2015, IICPSD, together with the World Bank, continued to support the implementation of the Inclusive Business Framework. In 2016, the G20 Global Platform on Inclusive Business was launched under China’s G20 presidency to advance national policies and strengthen policy makers’ capacity to drive business solutions that benefit poor people. National working groups, including one in Brazil, were also supported to take concrete action. And now the Center is in discussions with the German Presidency on how best to carry on advancing this work under the G20.

The regional value chain development project, through the Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan Consortium set up with the Center’s support last year, is moving forward. IICPSD is mobilizing partners to implement projects identified through the initiative’s agro-food industry feasibility study. These new opportunities will be presented to international donors and Central Asian governments in January 2017 in Almaty. Discussions for replicating the value chain and consortium methodology in West Africa are ongoing with the Islamic Development Bank.

The Center has also successfully advanced private sector-led skills development. IICPSD, the Islamic Development Bank, the Statistical, Economic and Social Research and Training Centre for Islamic Countries and Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA) agreed on a joint economic empowerment initiative to benefit OIC member countries. This initiative will help to increase employment and livelihood opportunities for disadvantaged people, including migrants and refugees, by leveraging the role of markets and the private sector in skills development.

In addition, the Center has been an active organizer and expert advocate in major international conferences. For example, it supported several activities at the World Humanitarian Summit in May and organized three side events during the United Nations General Assembly in New York in September. Building on the successful outcomes of the previous Bosphorus Summit, the Center is organizing four panels on the SDGs and the private sector at this year’s Summit. I would especially like to thank the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) for partnering with us in supporting the Center organization of the four panels in the Bosphorus Summit. Such events are crucial in building momentum and forming further partnerships to tackle todays’ complex development issues.

We have a strong pipeline of new initiatives. Last May for example, the Center and the Islamic Development Bank launched the Global Islamic Finance Impact Investing Platform in Jakarta, Indonesia. Together with the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs and the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, we set up a new Connecting Business initiative, which is supported by many governments, philanthropic foundations and private-sector partners. Discussions with several companies, including IBM, to set up collaboration initiatives are ongoing.

To diversify its resource base, the Center mobilized US$5.2 million and submitted further proposals for another US$17.6 million in 2016.

I would like to thank the Government of Turkey for its continued collaboration and contributions, which have enabled this work. I would also like to express my personal appreciation to all of you for having invested your time in providing guidance to find the right focus for the Center. As you can see, it its bearing fruit and we now have a strong foundation for our private-sector work, a promising pipeline, new partners and a strong team here in Istanbul.

I am confident that these elements will enable us to continue our successful partnership by leveraging our collective resources to attract additional funding and partners, and most importantly, delivering development impact at scale.

This meeting provides a great opportunity to further develop the plan for the Center and its activities together. Let us start by hearing more about the progress for 2016, and the planned priorities and budget for 2017, which will follow the same work areas of inclusive business, skills development and Islamic finance. This will be followed up by a discussion of the resource-mobilization plan and the Advisory Board.

Thank you very much for your attention.

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