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Devex Examines Private Sector Involvement In Post-2015 Planning Process

“Planning for the post-2015 development agenda — which will officially kick off [this] week in New York during the U.N. General Assembly meetings — is expected to feature an aspect the expiring Millennium Development Goals [MDGs] did not in their infancy: vocal leadership from the private sector,” Devex reports. “Still, some business leaders are wondering, as the post-2015 planning process moves forward from public discussions to inter-governmental decisions — when, how and where will the private sector be asked to participate?” the news service writes. “Currently, there is no clear post-2015 planning roadmap that identifies the specific moments, meetings, or high-level panels where business representatives will play a role in formulating policy, even though many — including key U.N. officials — agree that several of the dozen or so post-2015 goals will ‘speak directly to business and the private sector,'” the news service notes.

“Macharia Kamau, Kenya’s permanent representative to the world body and co-chair of the open working group on sustainable development goals, said the distinction between development and business communities presents a false dichotomy,” according to Devex. “Kamau added that ‘we need to see each other as one,’ and noted that deliberation on the MDGs led to a primarily ‘social agenda,’ defined by development actors from a North-South and official development assistance framework,” the news service writes. However, “[s]ome [U.N. Global Compact (UNGC)] participants” — a group of business leaders who met on Thursday with a pre-assembly conference — “warned that [this] week some country representatives will likely voice concerns over the high degree of business involvement in setting the stage for the next development agenda, and business leaders agreed that in some cases of corporate short-sightedness, those concerns are well-founded” (Igoe, 9/20).