The UN Global Compact Network in Nigeria inaugurated the two-year UN Global Compact Africa Strategy and Africa Regional Hub to mobilize business for impact across the continent.
The UN-Global Compact is a United Nations program, designed to help businesses in the post-COVID-19 era, align their operations for a sustainable and inclusive future through a two-year strategic plan from 2021 to 2023.
Matthias Schmale, United Nations Resident Coordinator for Nigeria, at the inauguration in Abuja, urged President Muhammadu Buhari’s regime to do more to maintain Nigeria’s leading position in Africa’s continental trade.
According to him, Nigeria can maintain its lead in mobilizing business for impact. Although many Nigerians show examples of trading across borders, the challenge remained trade barriers.
“First, are there enough legal frameworks, are they respected and what sanctions exist? The second big part that Nigeria controls is mobilizing domestic resources and finding local solutions to problems,” he said. “The focus cannot just be on what Nigeria can teach others. If he’s not doing it himself, there really is a lot to be done around domestic resource mobilization. One aspect of this is around tax regimes, there is a need to have honest conversations about who pays the taxes; Do business people fulfill their tax obligations? »
Mr. Schmale explained that if Nigeria “wants to have a flourishing economy, you must invest in the education system and in health: you cannot generate profit if you do not have a healthy workforce. and educated.
He advised Nigeria to push for greater hope of an African trading zone, adding that this was part of the agenda around the continent, where Nigeria could play a big role.
Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire, Special Assistant to the President on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), reiterated the regime’s commitment to encouraging businesses to thrive in Nigeria and Africa in general.
According to her, the 10 principles of the United Nations Global Compact are essential and have a direct relationship with the SDGs, indirectly through key performance indicators.
“He is likely to enhance our collaboration and our national development, both in Nigeria, in Africa and in the world at large. We also recognized the importance of partnership in all these areas and the role that each stakeholder must play to effectively implement the strategy of the United Nations Global Compact for Africa,” said Ms. Orelope-Adefulire.
She added, “As a government, we need to create an enabling environment and establish the necessary regional framework structure for a partnership that will help us achieve the SDGs.”
The principles of the United Nations Global Compact focus on human rights, labour, the environment and anti-corruption.
In his address, Mr. Cui Jianchun, Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria, appealed for UN support for Nigeria to achieve the set goals.