The two Global Compact Local Networks, Ukraine and Switzerland & Liechtenstein have been working together since 2018. The goal of this partnership is to create synergies to support our member companies in Responsible Business Conduct (RBC) and economic sustainability.
The Ukraine Reform Conference
2021-22 offers additional opportunities within the framework of the Ukraine Reform Conference, which is chaired by Switzerland. The international meetings aim to discuss reform priorities, which are essential for a peaceful and innovative Ukraine. This year, the Conference will be held in Lugano.
The two Local Networks of the UN Global Compact are engaged in this process to involve and connect as many companies as possible. They make a significant contribution to local and international value creation and, through their example and vast knowledge , also have the opportunity to make a big difference with local companies and partners. Ukraine is far advanced from a technological point of view. It has a lot of talent and low costs to offer.
Together, the two Global Compact Local Networks will offer and conduct various joint activities and events, also in consultation and partly in cooperation with the Swiss Foreign Ministry and the Ukrainian government.
Anti-Corruption Week in Kiyv
Antonio Hautle, Executive Director of the Global Compact Network Switzerland & Liechtenstein (GCNSL) was present at the Partnership for Sustainability Award 2021 ceremony in Kiyv in December 2021.
Additionally, as part of the International Anti-Corruption Week, the Global Compact Networks Ukraine and Switzerland & Liechtenstein organized an event in Kyiv on December 7th with high-level business representatives, the United Nations Office in Ukraine, the Swiss Embassy in Ukraine and a number of NGOs. The private sector is crucial to achieving the goals of sustainable reform. 16 Ukrainian companies committed in a Memorandum on Collective Action Against Corruption to actively contribute to this.
The meeting addressed the Anti-Corruption requirements faced by transnational and local companies in the Ukrainian context. Four CEOs of large transnational companies were able to demonstrate how important a strong Anti-Corruption policy is for business success. A zero-tolerance policy, regular training, education and well-functioning compliance systems are essential. However, a culture of integrity must be lived and exemplified in companies, because not all the employees can be monitored at all times.
What is important is a culture of trust and responsibility, supported by a wide range of measures and controls. Only this way employees can react correctly in problematic situations and make good decisions. An essential element is the possibility of "speaking up". It should be possible to report irregularities and problematic processes; this creates trust and strengthens employees in their day-to-day work.
It became clear that for Ukrainian companies the corruption issue is much more difficult because they cannot rely on clear international guidelines and directives as large transnational companies do. This is another reason why Global Compact Network Ukraine is launching Collective Action against Corruption. A large number of companies signed a Memorandum on Collective Action Against Corruption during the event and committed to actively engage in this process.
Further joint activities
At the World Economic Forum (WEF) Davos in January 2022, two events are planned on the topics "Going green" and "Banking for the Future". With Participants from the UN Global Compact, representatives of Switzerland, Ukraine and the two Local Networks, we would like to offer another platform for mutual meeting, exchange and hopefully, concrete steps.
In the course of (the year) 2022, further activities on Anti-Corruption Collective Action will follow in cooperation with the Basel Institute on Governance, joint webinars on the UN Global Compact Ten Principles and the SDGs as well as exchange opportunities between companies from Switzerland and Ukraine.
The conference in Lugano on July 4-5 will be the highlight and conclusion. However, both Global Compact Local Networks will continue to work together on Responsible Business Conduct, the Agenda 2030 and the SDGs.
We invite all companies from Switzerland and Europe that are active in Ukraine to support these efforts and to actively contribute their knowledge. We also hope that as many transnational companies as possible will make their knowledge, experience and competence available to the extent possible via their subsidiaries in the local Global Compact Network Ukraine.
The 2030 Agenda and the SDGs can only be achieved together with the private sector.
The preparatory panel “On the road to Lugano” provided an opportunity to present the reform priorities of the Ukraine Reform Conference 2022 – focusing on 'Stability and Prosperity' – which will take place in July 2022. You can watch the full panel discussion here: