Private sector and development cooperation. One size does not fit

The EU and its member states count on the private sector as key actor in contributing to the success of the Sustainable Development Goals. Its role is highlighted again in the recently adopted European Consensus for Development. 

Private sector and development cooperation. One size does not fit

In a new report: “10 point roadmap for Europe on the role of the private sector in development” CONCORD* launches ten areas of action for the EU to ensure a fair, sustainable and accountable contribution of the private sector to the 2030 Agenda. The report has been developed by CONCORD members in collaboration with allies and experts.

Abandon the “the ones size fits all” approach

First area of action is to make a distinction between the various actors the private sector consists of. Private actors are extremely diverse. The report calls the government to tailor and differentiate their approaches depending on business size and models. The EU and member states must support environmentally and socially sustainable development with a strong focus on local micro, small and medium enterprises, social dialogue and women’s economic empowerment.

CONCORD appeals to the EU to prioritize the strengthening of small producers in local and regional value chains, over global value chains, as more of 80% of their products is destined for local and regional markets

The 10 point roadmap includes case studies, which illustrate both opportunities for positive outcomes as well as existing gaps and concerns.  ICCO’s star project “Spicing up the nutmeg value chain” in Indonesia is one of such examples.

2030 Agenda

The report is a must read for everyone working with or in private sector, for NGOs and governments, as the 10 areas, such as trade and investments, taxation, financial regulations, justice, business and human rights, access to remedy, cover the whole range of actions that the EU and member states need to undertake to contribute to the realization of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.


Ad Ooms, co-author and Account Manager EU Institutions at ICCO Cooperation

*CONCORD is the European confederation of relief and development NGOs

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