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Wednesday, 18 April 2018 - 17:18
President says “Sri Lanka is committed to sustainable development”
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President Maithripala Sirisena says Sri Lanka is committed to sustainable development.

Delivering the keynote address at the Commonwealth Business Forum, the invited all including business community to join Sri Lanka’s development agenda.

He delivered the speech under the title, “Delivering the SDGs: Aligning Business, Societies and Governments”.

Full text of the speech:

Excellencies,
Commonwealth Secretary-General,
Distinguished guests,
Ladies and gentlemen.
 
I am pleased to join the key stakeholders of government, business community and the civil society at this Commonwealth Business Forum to address you on a subject that I believe is very important and timely in the present day context.
 
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.
 
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.
 
The primary responsibility of policy implementation lies with the governments. In many countries, like in Sri Lanka, Heads of State and Government are personally leading these efforts. Inclusive and sustainable business models will lead to sustainable development, especially projected towards the longer term.
 
Good business practices would be a catalyst for peace and good governance. It should reflect social responsibilities and uphold the rule of law with zero tolerance for corruption. Such practices will enable inclusive growth and common prosperity.
 
It is encouraging to see an increase in public-private partnerships to deliver much-needed infrastructure in attaining the Sustainable Development Goals.
 
Ladies and Gentlemen,
 
I take this opportunity to request you all, as socially responsible partners, to consider as part of your business models to include technical and financial contributions to the implementation phase of the SDGs.
 
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-centered.
 
Sri Lanka Government as a means of advancing the implementation process, created a special Ministry for Sustainable Development, integrating the SDGs to the overall national policies.
 
Our Government’s “Blue-Green” economic plan will ensure the full utilization 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.
 
I call upon everyone present here to join hands with the Commonwealth countries as well as others to bring prosperity with best business practices that will promote social responsibility and ensure social inclusiveness.
 
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.
 
I wish everyone here will commit, plan and programme to reach that real alignment.
 
Thank you.

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