5 February, 2018

Business & Development Actors Partnering to Reach the SDGs Together – Insights from Global Partnership Bangladesh Workshop

By Global Partnership

Realising the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030 requires resources from all actors – public and private, domestic and international. A Technical Workshop on Private Sector Engagement (PSE) explored how the government, businesses, civil society and the development community can work together in practical ways to create “shared value” for business profit and development impact.

Embracing this shift-change in development co-operation, participants agreed on how different partners can align their interests and foster trust to use development co-operation in innovative ways to work with the private sector and scale up much-needed solutions to Bangladesh’s development challenges.

The workshop was held as a first in a series of country-level consultations in Dhaka, Bangladesh on 4-5 February 2018, hosted by the Ministry of Finance, together with the ICC Bangladesh, with support of the Government of Germany and under the aegis of the Global Partnership for Effective Development Co-operation (GPEDC).

A case study based on a mapping of over 240 private sector engagement projects in Bangladesh with development co-operation support – focused on finance, agriculture, manufacturing and energy – served as background for the discussions. Policy recommendations on effective private sector engagement focused on engaging the business and development community in more inclusive, government-led policy dialogue, and more structured knowledge sharing and learning to align interests, strengthen trust and build capacity around a range of specific national priorities. Emphasis was placed on generating greater poverty impact of PSE through development co-operation, with a focus on supporting micro-, small- and medium-enterprises, greater transparency and accountability as well as a focus on data, results and impact, social dialogue, climate change, and gender equality.

The Global Partnership 2017-2018 Work Programme aims to guide the development community on how to adapt policies and approaches to engage the business sector on the SDGs. It works towards mutually agreed guidelines for effective private sector engagement through development co-operation.

The event was attended by around 60 representatives from the Government of Bangladesh, many development partners, small and medium enterprises, large domestic and transnational firms, business associations, civil society organizations, trade unions, parliamentarians, foundations, and research and development institutes. It encouraged greater peer learning on effective PSE through development co-operation with participating neighbouring countries India, Nepal and Sri Lanka.

Similar case study reports are being carried out in Egypt, El Salvador and Uganda in 2018 to generate mutually agreed global guidelines for effective private sector engagement through development co-operation.

For more information on the Technical Workshop, please click here.

To read more about the GPEDC’s Private Sector work please see here.