Strategic engagement of the private sector is critical to achieving most of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) across the globe, the Director, Governance and Sustainability, Sahara Group, Mrs. Pearl Uzokwe has said.

Uzokwe, told Asharami TV, a Sahara Group thought leadership platform, that she would provide insight on how the private sector can become the engineroom for driving the SDGs at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Week on ‘Private Finance for Sustainable Development,’ in France.

She would join a dais of panellists to have an open and inclusive dialogue on accelerating progress towards more effective private sector engagement (PSE) through development co-operation this month.

Other panellists include His Excellency Ms. Sahar Nasr, Minister of Investment and International Co-operation Egypt, Uta Bollhof, Deputy Director General BMZ, Germany and Vitalice Meja, Civil Society Partnership for Development Effectiveness.

The event is a specialised policy dialogue being promoted by the Global Partnership for Effective Development Co-operation and would have business leaders, investors, senior policy makers from governments, civil society, trade unions, parliaments and international organisations in attendance.

Speaking ahead of the event, Uzokwe was quoted in a statement to have said: “We are beginning to see a paradigm shift in the way the private sector tackles societal issues. Businesses are not islands and as such cannot succeed in a failing world. It is no longer okay to operate solely for revenue generation.

“Societal issues are both business issues and opportunities. Sahara Group remains committed to partnering with the public sector, government and civil society towards the attainment of sustainable solutions. “

According to her, Sahara Group has pioneered several private sector led interventions with sustainable results across locations where the leading energy and infrastructure conglomerate operates.

“Sahara Group is passionate about promoting sustainable development and we believe co-operation is vital amongst stakeholders for success. Our ongoing Food Africa project which involves agencies of the United Nations, the Kaduna State Government and the celebrity chefs, the Roca Brothers, is a remarkable example of how co-operation works. I intend to share this experience and more at the event,” she added.

The Global Partnership which also seeks to advance the effectiveness of development efforts by all concerned actors towards the achievement of the SDGs has highlighted some of the in-roads made possible by sustained development cooperation by multiple stakeholders.