Arab League official addresses 8th Cycle of Arabia Social Corporate Responsibility Forum

Dubai, 27th October, 2015 (WAM) — Ambassador Shahira Hassan Wahbi, Chief of the Sustainable Development and International Cooperation at the League of Arab States (LAS), has expressed the LAS’s readiness to join forces with the Arabia Social Corporate Responsibility Network and cooperate with serious civil society, so that they play their role to support the Arab countries in attaining the aspirations of the Arab people of living a decent life in dignity and freedom.
In a statement before the 8th Cycle of the Arabia Social Corporate Responsibility Forum Awards in Dubai, Wahbi said,” I strongly appraise and appreciate the distinguished choice for this year’s logo, “Beyond Responsibility: Towards Transformational Sustainability,” which goes in line with recent international developments, and the adoption, by the United Nations in July of this year, of the Sustainable Development Goals 2030. All countries have pledged to implement them, thus they constitute the work plan of all countries of the world in the next fifteen years including the Arab countries.” ”These goals seek to achieve efficiency and effectiveness to reach sustainable development through the promotion of integration and balance between the economic, social and environmental dimensions of sustainable development. The private sector and corporations have an important role in achieving these Goals, because their realization intersects with social and environmental corporate responsibility the subject matter of our meeting today. And it requires change and transformation which you have chosen for your logo this year,” she stated.
Turning to “Corporate Reporting”, she said the concept is closely related to corporate social responsibility and plays a key role in achieving the sustainable development goals and it touches on the logo of this forum.
”The provision by corporations of high-quality reports enables comparisons and contributes to financial stability, promotes good governance, and helps to responsible practices socially and environmentally this is the first step towards achieving sustainable development. Reporting is considered a major source of information about corporations’ performance. It will enable enhanced monitoring of the implementation mechanisms of sustainable development goals by providing governments, institutions, the society and other stakeholders with the means to assess the economic, environmental and social impact of corporate performance in the field of sustainable development.” To achieve this, she went on to say, it is necessary to make greater efforts to ensure consistency with the existing frameworks and methods of reporting and the comparability of the information and data submitted by corporations. So, the United Nations Intergovernmental Group on International Standards of Accounting and Reporting decided to put on its agenda this year (November 2015) the topic of “good practices to enhance the role of corporate reporting in achieving the objectives of sustainable development.
Addressing challenges facing the Arab region, she said,” The challenge for us is that: we first have to raise awareness of this reporting systems and their equal importance for companies and for governments who might be required to include in their national follow up Sustainable development reports what was done by their corporations to achieve sustainable development.
Another challenge, she explained, is that the Arab states and Arab experts are not involved in the international efforts and negotiations concerning the role of corporate reporting in the achievement of sustainable development. This requires a swift action to catch up and keep pace with international developments.
”Finally, it is important that our companies are aware that what they used to do in the past as a community or environmental role is no longer just for the publicity for a product or for marketing or to influence the taxes imposed on them, but it has become an integral part of the development process in the country and the Arab region as a whole.” She noted that your forum constitutes a valuable opportunity to share experiences and success stories and lessons learned, as well as think together on how to cooperate, network and build partnerships to achieve corporate social responsibility.
”Your success in this matter reinforces Arab Joint cooperation in several areas of productivity and service. So your role is not only raising awareness and participation in achieving sustainable development for the Arab region, but it extends to have a significant impact to achieve Arab integration and linking Arab interests that will lead us to the establishment of the lonely awaited Arab Union inshallah,” she concluded.