Sri Lanka President Maithripala Sirisena at Commonwealth Business Forum

President Maithripala Sirisena delivering the keynote address at the Commonwealth Business Forum yesterday said the primary responsibility of implementing Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) lay with the government and that he, as the Head of State was personally leading these efforts.

Speaking on ‘Delivering the SDGs: Aligning Business, Societies and Governments”, the President said: “The world today is united in its efforts to create cleaner, greener and sustainable energy. There is no standard approach for implementing the SDGs, and each country decides its own path. However, the approach led by our countries should be people centred”.

On the part of the Sri Lankan Government, he said they had created a special Ministry for Sustainable Development, integrating the SDGs to the overall national policies and the government had launched a ‘Blue-Green’ economic plan which would ensure the full utilisation of the ocean and other natural resources of Sri Lanka in an environmentally friendly and sustainable manner.

“Through this economic strategy Sri Lanka hopes to become a role model for addressing the best practices,” the President said.

In 2015, the world came together and agreed upon a common vision for a sustainable future in adopting the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, in order to create a world that is socially just, prosperous and sustainable.

The Plan of Action we agreed upon is inspiring. Therefore it is very important we give life to this ambitious development plan all the way through its successful implementation, urged the President further.

“In order to eradicate poverty, to address climate change and to build peaceful inclusive societies, it is agreed that the key stakeholders must come together”.

These include not only the governments but also the business and civil societies and communities, he added.

“Good business practices would be a catalyst for peace and good governance. It should reflect social responsibilities and uphold rule of law with zero tolerance on corruption. Such practices will enable inclusive growth and common prosperity”, said the President further, also taking the opportunity to encourage public-private partnerships to deliver much needed infrastructure in attaining the Sustainable Development Goals.

“Real alignment of business society and government will depend on these stakeholders aiming to achieve cohesive social responsibility for the best satisfaction of the people”.

(Source: Daily News)