(New York) – The UN Global Compact has expelled a total of 3,123 companies since 2005 for failure to communicate progress on their efforts to implement the UN Global Compact’s ten sustainability principles.
In response to this development, the Global Compact Office today issued the following statement:
We stand at a major crossroads in terms of the business contribution to solving the most urgent global issues. The UN Global Compact today counts more than 10,000 participants, including over 7,000 businesses, many of whom are working actively to advance greater environmental and social sustainability in the spirit of the initiative’s ten universal principles.
But the fact remains that a large majority of the world’s businesses have not yet made any commitment to universal principles, acting as a drag on sustainability efforts.
Even within the Global Compact, a significant number of participants continuously fail to produce evidence of progress. In the spirit of transparency and accountability, we have long held that these companies must be identified and expelled. The number of companies expelled has recently passed 3,000 (since 2005) and today stands at 3,123. Please click here for a full listing.
It is encouraging that the number of new companies joining the Global Compact significantly exceeds the number of expulsions. This means that the initiative continues on its growth trajectory, with the stated goal of reaching 20,000 business participants by 2020. But commitments must be followed by action, and we call on all of our 7,000 business participants to broaden and deepen their implementation efforts – and to encourage their peers, suppliers, subsidiaries, partners and corporate clients to do the same. We also hope that the international community – civil society, governments, academia, and media – will take note of this information and encourage more companies to make a serious and enduring commitment to universal principles.
As we chart a course forward, the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) in June of this year will provide an international platform for companies to demonstrate how they are contributing to the sustainable development agenda. Indeed, our position is that corporate sustainability – when fully implemented – represents the business contribution to global sustainable development objectives.
At the Rio+20 Corporate Sustainability Forum on 15-18 June, business leaders will have an opportunity to showcase best and frontier practices and commitments, and to set forth their recommendations for governments to develop more conducive and effective enabling environments.
The Corporate Sustainability Forum also presents an opportunity for the international community to demand more of the business community. Our global sustainability challenges require the full and active involvement of international business. In this way, Rio+20 can be a historic call to action to business leaders everywhere and a milestone on the path to the Global Compact’s vision of a more inclusive global economy.