Press Release: UK India Business Council launches Socio-Economic Impact Campaign

By Kealan Finnegan

UKIBC launched our SEI platform in New Delhi with partners United Nations Development Programme

The UK India business Council has launched a campaign to highlight the importance of the socio-economic impact that UK businesses make in India.

This campaign is being delivered in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme and will map the activities of businesses and universities against the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. Key findings and observations from the campaign will be compiled into a report to be released in late 2020 to coincide with the UN Climate Change Summit in Glasgow.

The launch in New Delhi was graced by Ms Sanyukta Samaddar, Advisor at Niti Aayog, along with Mr Richard Heald, Group CEO, UKIBC, and Ms Shoko Noda, UN Development Programme (UNDP) Resident Representative in India.

The UNDP-UKIBC partnership will facilitate mapping of UK businesses socio-economic impact against the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, which are aimed at eliminating poverty and ensuring prosperity, ranging from environmental sustainability to advancing education.

The launch included a “walkthrough” exhibition showcasing the work carried out by several UK businesses and universities in India, including Cairn Energy, Holland and Barrett, Shell, Marks and Spencer, JCB and Reckitt Benckiser.

Speaking at the event, Mr Richard Heald, Group CEO, UKIBC observed, “UK businesses and universities want to succeed in India, and their definition of success includes helping India achieve its socio-economic objectives. This is an exciting time to launch this campaign. Across the world there is a growing acceptance of sustainable development as an over-arching policy goal, which has stimulated interest in assessing the impact of businesses”.

“These issues are no longer just the government’s responsibility, or purely philanthropic efforts. So, any global business looking for an effective path for growth should bring social impact into the core of its strategy and operations. I’m delighted that UK businesses are already making a substantial impact in India, and through this campaign we hope to raise the bar” stated Mr Heald.

Also present during the launch, Ms Shoko Noda, UNDP Resident Representative in India, said, “Given its rising world power status and prominent role in the formulation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), India arguably has a special duty to bring these goals to fruition. It is encouraging that Prime Minister Modi has affirmed India’s strong commitment to the SDGs”.

“Shepherding the achievements of the SDGs is an enormous task that requires the involvement of every sector and each level of society. The experiences of many countries clearly illustrate India needs to build a socio-economic infrastructure to drive this inclusive growth” she added.

UK businesses operating in India have been committed to this space for a long time. UKIBC acknowledges this commitment and is keen to highlight the UK’s leading and longstanding support through the launch of this Socio-Economic Impact Campaign. UKIBC will continue to support SEI developments by UK companies throughout India and raise awareness of the important work being done. You can follow these developments on UKIBC’s Socio-Economic Impact website at: https://www.ukibc.com/socio-economic-impact/


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