Sustainable Development Goal 17
is clear in that it states action “requires a revitalised and enhanced global partnership that brings together governments, civil society, the private sector, the United Nations system and other actors”. Here at HEINEKEN
, we take partnerships increasingly as an opportunity to drive our sustainability strategy. Whether it is through our collaborative work as a Board-member company of The Consumer Goods Forum or through our individual cross-sectoral initiatives. We fully acknowledge the benefits of working together, with our peers and other stakeholders, and the collaborative role the private sector can and should be playing. We are now seeing the success of such partnerships around the world.
On behalf of all of the staff at the CGF, I would like to wish you a happy and successful New Year! As usual at this time of year, I am writing with a summary of how the CGF has been working on your behalf in 2016 and a look ahead to our priorities for 2017.
A LOOK BACK ON 2016
Those of you able to attend the Global Summit in Cape Town last year will remember that the overall theme was “Seizing Opportunities in the Face of Disruption”. Little did we realise, when we chose that theme, quite how much disruption 2016 would bring. Amongst many corporate developments in our global industry last year, we saw the closing of the industry’s biggest ever M&A deal, several billion-dollar acquisitions of new digital business models by established players and announcements of investments in physical stores by the industry’s two largest ecommerce specialists. Each of these developments may prove to be a significant milestone in its own right. But no doubt, it will be the geopolitical disruptions of 2016 that will go down in history.
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Today an estimated 21 million individuals are still in conditions of what the United Nations refers to as ‘modern’ forms of slavery, with 14 million of those individuals being victims of labour exploitation specifically. 21 million – that’s nearly the population of Australia, an incredible number to still exist. Global supply chains are riddled with this problem and it must be stopped. Thankfully however, these human rights violations are not falling on deaf ears. Industry leaders are well aware of the role that business must play in addressing this worldwide problem and I am eager to announce our latest development.
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