24.10.2018  |  Strategi & ledelse

UN Day 2018: The Responsibility of Multinational Companies

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On this day, 73 years ago, the United Nations officially came into being and a new epoch of international cooperation was entered. There is, however, still a long way to go. In this respect, multinational companies are crucial actors.

The Need for Peace
October 24, 1945, marks a decisive moment in modern history, being the day the fundamental treaty of the United Nations came into effect - the UN Charter. This day has been celebrated annually since 1948, and with a short look at history, it seems no wonder why.

After World War II, the world was in ruins. The international community was fragmented and the need for peace and stability acute. Consequently, 51 nations met in San Francisco to agree upon the framework of a brighter and more peaceful future, as no one could bear the consequences of yet another war.

This convention led to the creation of the United Nations with the core purpose of maintaining international peace and security through international cooperation, while ”encouraging respect for human rights and for fundamental freedoms for all(UN Charter, Article I).

Today, the UN consists of 193 member states, as well as several agencies contributing to humanitarian assistance across the globe, such as the WHO, UNICEF, UNESCO, and many, many more.

The Need for Action
Although much has been achieved since 1945, we cannot rest our laurels just yet, and international cooperation is necessary to counter the global challenges of today. 

On September 25, 2015, the United Nations thus formulated an agenda describing a sustainable future for humankind and our planet, through the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In harmony with the UN Charter, the goals envision a future of prosperity for humankind, where poverty is eradicated, the planet is protected from degradation, and peaceful and just societies are promoted.

All of this has to be achieved before 2030. To turn this vision into reality, multinational companies are key players.

The Reach of Bayer
The future is bright if companies such as Bayer pull their weight. Being a Life Science company with a worldwide reach and a long history within the fields of healthcare and agriculture, Bayer has the means, knowledge, and responsibility to contribute.

For 18 years, Bayer has been committed to the UN’s visions, as an advocate of the UN Global Compact; the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative. Therefore, embracing the Sustainable Development Goals was clear as day.

While Bayer contributes to several of the SDGs, the company is particularly effective when it comes to the goals: ”Zero hunger” and ”Good health and well-being”.
One of the key elements of Bayer’s sustainability strategy is ”high-quality food for all”. Bayer is also a key contributor to innovative healthcare products and technologies, with everything from neglected disease treatment to modern contraception.

According to Dr. Wolfgang Große Entrup (Head of Corporate Sustainability & Business Stewardship at Bayer) companies play a more important role than ever, explaining:

"Governments are increasingly occupied with themselves, and national interests are once again being more intensively articulated. In this situation, globally operating companies can help to maintain the momentum of the global sustainability process – by further driving it forward themselves." 

As a global citizen, this responsibility is taken very seriously at Bayer, that will continue to work hard to achieve the SDGs by 2030.

Want to learn more about Bayer and the SDGs?
https://www.bayer.com/en/un-sustainable-development-goals.aspx

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