The Belt and Road Forum, held in Beijing, China, on 15th May 2017 presented ideas and strategies to build an ongoing synergy between the country's 2030 agenda, the Belt and Road initiative and plans for Chinese enterprises to improve their overseas operations and agreements.
Collaboratively, the Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation (CAITEC) of the Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) and the Research Centre of State-Owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (SASAC) of the State Council worked in conjunction to develop the 2017 Report on the Sustainable Development of Chinese Enterprises Overseas.
Launched at the Belt and Road Forum, the report sets out the relationship and harmonious interests between the 2030 Agenda, the Belt and Road Initiative and the how Chinese enterprises behave and operate overseas.
As Chinese companies and the government explore how to maximise their sustainable development overseas, the 2017 Report on the Sustainable Development of Chinese Enterprises Overseas, the second report of its kind, reviews and provides recommendations on best practices.
Together, these efforts aim to structure development plans around infrastructure improvement, industry upgrades, job creation, technology transfers and the creation of ecological civilisations. While Chinese cosmetics and personal care companies are demonstrating their commitment to sustainability over the mid-to-long-term, the report seeks to strengthen these plans.
"As the growth engine in most developing and developed countries, the private sector contributes significantly to poverty eradication and creating and aggregate income and wealth by generating and providing affordable goods and services," said Tegegnework Gettu, Administrator, UNDP.
"UNDP hopes the report can serve as a reference, both in principle and in practice, for Chinese enterprises at home and abroad in facilitating the implementation of the 2030 Agenda in Belt and Road regions and build a community of shared interests and responsibility which enhances economic, social and environmental value in a sustainable way," Gettu went on to say.
UNDP, which strives to support and sustain growth that helps to improve the quality of life, recognised that the China’s growing marketplace can drive social responsibility and sustainability. The new report emphasises the importance of enhancing activities and approaches to green and sustainable economic development that work to help local communities and strive to reduce poverty.
With Chinese enterprises generating business in both the domestic market and overseas, businesses are looking for mutually beneficial opportunities that can support their commercial activities and the wider environment throughout the entire supply chain.
In 2016, the country’s non-financial outward direct investment (ODI) stood out $170.1 bn (€154.7 bn), which rose from 44.1% in 2015. During this period, China invested in a total of 7,961 overseas enterprises in 164 countries and regions.
Survey results have revealed that to improve its sustainability efforts going forward, the Chinese landscape needs to focus on the systematic analysis of social and environmental risks, creating strategic management systems for sustainable development, boosting information disclosure and building communications with stakeholders.