Statement delivered by the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Marina Sereni, at the Side Event on “Global Impact Forum – Uniting Business LIVE 2021″ —
I am pleased to address this Forum organized by the United Nations Global Compact. Italy has been a long-standing supporter of this initiative. As of today, more than 400 Italian business and non-business actors are part of the Global Compact Italian Network.
Full involvement of the private sector is of paramount importance to move towards the fulfillment of the SDGs within the “decade of action”. Governments and private sector need to join hands in order to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable development and its SDGs.
The Italian private sector is on board on their achievement. Many companies – both large ones and SMEs – are committed to developing sustainable practices. I thank the Global Compact Italian Network for its role in the promotion of corporate sustainability among businesses of any size.
SMEs are the backbone of our productive system, giving a significant contribution to tackle current global challenges. Sadly, the pandemic heavily hit them. Therefore, the Italian Government has supported SMEs with the “Patto per l’Export”, funded with 5.3 billion Euro so far.
We will not be able to live up to the highest expectations of the younger generations without an effective multi-stakeholder approach to global issues. Let us focus on global food systems and sustainable energy production. They are at the core of our multilateral agenda this year. 2
As G20 Presidency, Italy promoted the Matera Declaration. It recognizes the importance of partnership between private and public sectors, in order to improve agri-food systems, accelerating digital transformation and innovation.
In preparation of the Pre-Food Systems Summit (FSS), Italy had called on all stakeholders to participate in shaping strategies and solutions towards better food systems. Many companies joined the five Action Tracks leadership groups. The level of engagement from the private sector has been remarkable, with a very constructive attitude.
Besides, Italy launched the Food Coalition. It will be a significant opportunity to move towards the achievement of the “zero hunger” goal. The participation of a huge number of people at the Pre-Summit and the passionate voice of young people in the global debate makes us optimistic in such a common endeavor.
The very same goes for environment. The Italian G20 Agenda focuses on the nexus between climate and energy, with the first G20 Joint Energy and Climate Ministerial meeting.
As a group, we achieved important results. We stressed the opportunities offered by innovative technological solutions. We enlightened the role of sustainable cities. And we argued in favor of the alignment of global financial flows towards a green, sustainable recovery. We will build on these efforts in view of the Leader’s Summit in Rome, next October.
A clean and sustainable energy transition will foster growth and resilience. It will also promote international technology cooperation, investments, free and open trade.
Moreover, as partner of the UK CoP26 Presidency, we expect the Conference to provide the stage for a full and effective implementation of the Paris Agreement. We need more ambitious national climate commitments. Italy will host in Milan the Pre-CoP, the preparatory ministerial meeting ahead of the Conference. We will also host the “Youth4Climate, Driving Ambition” event. It will give young people from around the world the opportunity to draw up concrete proposals to be put forward at the pre-CoP. We count on their ideas and their enthusiasm, as they can inspire us with their creativity, their sense of innovation and their care for sustainability.
These three words [sustainability, creativity and innovation] will also be the main features of Expo Dubai. Italy looks forward to opening its Pavilion and displaying the best of its technological, scientific and industrial innovation. We will show the image of a resilient, dynamic and innovative country, capable of building on its tradition to project itself towards the future.
In our vision, all these events should be an opportunity to raise the ambition of all the stakeholders in the global climate action, prompting an accelerated deployment of clean technologies, suggesting low-emissions pathways for fast-growing emerging economies, and so on. Action everywhere is important, but investments on clean energy in those developing Countries will be the most cost effective way to reduce emissions.
Ladies and Gentleman,
the 2030 Agenda suffered a patent slowdown, due to the pandemic. However, the unsustainable nature of the global development pattern so far was clear well before the COVID-19. That is why we need to “build back better”, focusing on socio-economic inclusion and pursuing “collaboration” rather than “competition” on global issues.
Italy is a strong supporter of the 2030 Agenda. We believe in and follow the principle of “leaving no one behind”. Based on that, we keep on launching and conducting and agree initiatives of technical assistance in those Countries most in need, such as in Africa. We will continue to work with them through know-how sharing, food emergency contribution, the strengthening of agriculture, building infrastructure, supporting the health system, and suggesting assistance solutions for people with disabilities.
In our cooperation with partner Countries, the environmental dimension in the 2030 Agenda is equally important. Indeed, climate, environment and clean energy are preconditions for sustainable development, economic and social stability, peace and security.
I thank you and I wish a full success to the UN Global Compact in its daily work and its far-reaching mission.