A grand session of the National Global Compact Network was held in Moscow

December 22, 2021

On December 21, the Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation hosted a solemn session of the UN Global Compact in Russia (UNGC) „Sustainable Development — a super idea that changes the world.“ The session is timed to coincide with the 20th anniversary of the UN Global Compact, which today brings together more than 14,000 participants in 160 countries of the world, the 10th anniversary of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, as well as the 5th anniversary of the National Global Compact Network Association.

The event was organized by the National Network of the UN GC in Russia, the Commission of the OP RF for the development of the non-profit sector and support for socially oriented NGOs. The partners of the session were the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Russian Ministry of Economic Development and the UN Office in Russia.

Representatives of government, business, charitable and public organizations summed up their work in the field of sustainable development in 2021. Plans were also announced: strengthening the National Association as part of the implementation of the updated strategy of the UN Global Compact and launching an international project in Russia to implement the UN Guiding Principles in the field of business and human rights.

The guests and speakers of the session were the first persons of the authorities, the UN in Russia, heads and top managers of leading companies, participants and partners of the UN GC in Russia, media people, the media, and the expert community.

The experts expressed hope for further productive cooperation. The organizers noted that in the new realities, conscientious participants in the UN GC are becoming more successful not only in terms of reputation, but also in terms of commercial business interests.

In the first part of the event, a discussion took place on the role of top officials of companies representing the UN Global Compact in Russia and developing the sustainable development agenda. Representatives of Sovcombank, Metalloinvest, Severstal and other members of the UN Global Compact shared their experience, best practices and ideas in this area.

One of the guests of the session was Mr. Anatoly Chubais, Special Representative of the President of the Russian Federation for Relations with International Organizations to Achieve Sustainable Development Goals. He spoke about the implementation of the principles of sustainable development in business activities. He also emphasized that for the owners and top officials of companies, the choice in favor of the SDGs is a personal moral choice.

“Today these are no longer general political statements, not some kind of lyrical appeals. No, this is a clear program… Life is complicated, it often happens that one has to pay dearly for a moral choice. And here we are in a completely amazing situation… This is the case when the right moral choice leads to the right business result” — said Mr. Chubais.

The participants discussed the role of the National Network as a navigator in the international landscape of sustainable development practices and ESG. Mr. Alexander Plakida, Chairman of the Governing Board of the UNGC National Network Association, noted that the UNGC Network in Russia receives new powers and opportunities to measure the progress of UNGC participants based on criteria and a new reporting format, as well as to nominate UNGC country leaders based on the methodology national nomination UN Global Compact Network Russia Special Recognition launched in 2022.