Making policies work


External event



Workshop with Private Sector in the Framework of the Policy Forum on Development (PFD)

16 March 2015

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This 2nd workshop follows the adoption of the Communication on the role of the private sector (COM(2014)263) and its Council Conclusions, as well as the recently adopted Communication Global Partnership for Poverty Eradication and Sustainable Development after 2015.

Building on the discussions held during the 1st workshop with the private sector on October 2014, it is co-organised with the International Organisation of Employers, as current global representative of the Private Sector in the PFD.  It is organised prior to the PFD formal meeting (17 and 18 March 2015) to allow conveying some key messages from the PS to the PFD).

ECDPM’s Bruce Byiers will moderate the panel session on “Working together for an enabling business environment for sustainable development.”

Speakers include:

  • Kris de Meester, FEB Belgium
  • Jean Diagou Kacou, President, Confédération générale des entreprises de Côte d’Ivoire (CGECI)
  • Jacqueline Mugo, Secretary General of Business Africa
  • Antti Karhunen, DG DEVCO C4, Head of Unit Trade and Private sector development

Background and objective:

Sustainable enterprise growth is crucial in achieving the goal of promoting economic growth and productive employment. Sustainable enterprises are the main drivers of investments and innovations which are needed to sustainably increase productivity and competitiveness of economies. Hence policy choices should always ensure that it creates an enabling environment for sustainable enterprises and have a net positive effect (whilst also achieving its protective and regulatory functions in an effective and efficient manner) on the capacity and confidence of enterprises to increase productivity, competitiveness and to innovate. Regulatory environment must be business-friendly and public administration must make it easier for businesses to grow and employ.

Policies at different levels and of different areas, be it macroeconomic policies or labour market policies, are not independent agents; they must come together to create an enabling environment for business and investments in order to promote employment and decent work. Macroeconomic policies do not work alone and they need to interact with other measures/policy areas with the goal of creating a net positive environment for investments and for sustainable enterprises, without which, there will be no work.

At the national level, many countries have undertaken deep structural reforms that need time to reach their full potential. Some reforms have been made to improve the environment for enterprises to set up, register, invest, hire and grow. A lot of these issues are developed in the World Bank Doing Business Report. In the ILO, the Employers’ Gropup pushed for the adoption of a Resolution on Sustainable enterprises.

Discussion Q&A with audience:

1. What constitutes an enabling business environment to you and why is it critical for sustainable development’

2. What role can employers’ organizations play in advocating for an enabling environment at national and regional levels?

3. What are some of the challenges faced by business?

4. What role should public private dialogue play?

5. What is the role of multilateral and regional institutions such as the European Commission in promoting an enabling environment in countries receiving development support?







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