United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited (HSBC) have joined hands together to promote sustainable supply chains in Bangladesh apparel industry by creating inclusive business models.
The cooperation, made as a part of UNDP’s Business Call to Action (BCtA) initiative which aims to accelerate progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), organised a seminar on “Leveraging Sustainable Supply Chain in Apparel” on 31 October 2018 at a local hotel.
Attending the seminar as the Chief Guest, Abul Kalam Azad, Principal Coordinator (SDG affairs), Prime Minister’s Office, said, “It would not possible for government to achieve the SDGs, unless all including private and development sector come forward.”
In his opening remarks, Francois de Maricourt, Chief Executive Officer, HSBC Bangladesh, said, “At HSBC, our aim is to support the development of sustainable supply chains for our clients, which will help them to grow internationally. As the second largest apparel exporter, Bangladesh needs to focus on creating sustainable supply chain practices, as we are also a country that is susceptible to climate change.”
Sudipto Mukerjee, Country Director, UNDP Bangladesh, stressed the importance of inclusive business model and said, “Inclusive business models have the potential to sustainably serve everyone through mutual benefit, be they the smallest enterprises or multinational giants, when tied together in a shared supply chain.
“Impact measurements can help identify supply chain gaps in policy, infrastructure and/or resource and creatively plug them to maximize social benefits and profits for everyone. I am happy that HSBC and UNDP were able to bring together all key actors who can fill such gaps and thereby help create an ecosystem of sustainability leaders,” he added.
Supply chains are responsible for majority of environmental impacts, due to factors like greenhouse emissions; and for the livelihood and wellbeing of communities. The joint initiative of UNDP and HSBC aims to minimise negative impacts and creates environmental, social, and economic benefits for all stakeholders involved in bringing products and services to markets.
Linda Germanis, Project Manager, UNDP Innovation Hub, made the keynote presentation. It was followed by two panel discussions on the current landscape of sustainable apparel industry and building inclusive apparel business models, facilitated by industry experts.
The event was also attended by suppliers, manufacturers, regulatory bodies, and development agencies to capture the comprehensive overview of the ecosystem and to empower the enactors to create an ecosystem of sustainability leaders.