Businesses must help speed up the realisation of our Global Goals
Change starts at the top. Nordic CEOs are committed to take lead.
Realising the UN SDGs is a business imperative
The world needs new business models that will drive the transition to a 21st century economy aligned with the ethical, social and environmental priorities of our time.
CEOs of some of the Nordic region’s largest companies have joined hands in a common commitment to integrate the UN Sustainable Development Goals in their respective business strategies, and create a forum for exchange of experiences and exploration of shared initiatives. All with the ambition to speed up the realization of the world’s most important “to do” list.
A global platform built around a Nordic approach
The initiative also creates a platform for the Nordic Prime Ministers to engage directly with CEOs on how to move from sustainability as a compliance exercise to purpose-driven companies. A key objective is to explore ways to deliver more impact through collaboration.
Nordic companies are built on shared values of inclusion, equality and long-termism. The Nordic CEOs believe these characteristics can help advance and accelerate the collective efforts outlined by the UN SDGs and the Paris Climate Accord.
Who we are
The CEOs and companies that share the commitment.
“Technology creates new opportunities to solve massive challenges connected to health, education and inequality. Businesses and the public sector play a key role in facilitating positive impact on society – that’s why we need close and constructive collaboration across sectors and industries. Several of the major Nordic companies have acknowledged this and, as Telenor, aligned their business strategies to one or more of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. We want to be ambassadors of change and encourage more CEOs and business leaders to join in. This isn’t about charity, it’s about facilitating long-term sustainable growth.”
“Companies have a profound effect on their community, which is why it is vital that they operate responsibly and make a positive impact. We see numerous opportunities in joining forces with other firms in the Nordic region and working with governmental authorities towards the achievement of the UN Global Goals. Not only is this important to our environment and society, but it will come to determine companies’ competitiveness in the future.”
“The ability to meet the ambitious targets of the UN Sustainable Development Goals requires visionary leadership, and I am honoured to be part of this commitment by Nordic business leaders in putting the SDGs at the very top of their agenda. As we enter a fourth industrial revolution, sustainability becomes an even more critical element of our business – as well as a business opportunity - and we must continually deliver value to society and respond to the many challenges facing our world.”
Odd Arild Grefstad
“Sustainable and socially responsible investments lie at the core of our savings strategy through strict sustainability requirements in our investments. As Norway's largest private asset manager, our most important influence on the UN Sustainable Development Goals is how we invest the more than 720 billion NOK we manage. We also see the importance of collaboration to reach the UN Sustainable Development Goals. A Nordic cross-sectoral collaboration allows us to learn best practices from each other, discuss challenging issues and also push the sustainability agenda together.’’
“SAS takes ambitious steps to reduce the negative impact from aviation through innovation, smart solutions and major investments in technology, without compromising the important role of the aircraft in our society – enabling people to meet and contribute to value creation and growth. With reference to UN Sustainable Development Goals #9, #12 and #13, SAS will reduce CO2 emissions by 25% by 2030, and use advanced biofuels equivalent to all SAS domestic air traffic.”
CEO, Swedbank (SE)
“We started as a societal engagement almost 200 years ago with the ambition of building a sound and sustainable economy. Our aim is to promote sustainable development in society and help people and businesses to make sustainable choices. We do this by guiding, inspiring and sharing useful knowledge about the economy. Swedbank signed the UN’s Principles for Responsible Banking in 2019, a commitment to put an even greater focus on the Paris Agreement and the SDGs. Partnerships across sectors, industries and countries are vital to accelerate the transition to a more sustainable society and therefore it is a privilege to collaborate through this network.”
Svein Tore Holsether
“I applaud this joint Nordic initiative. Collaboration is indeed the magic formula for reaching the UN sustainability goals. We learn again and again, that through collaboration we achieve results that exceed our imagination. For instance, thanks to a joint effort between Yara, Kongsberg, SINTEF and Kalmar, supported by the Norwegian government, we can soon launch the world´s first autonomous and emission free container ship. This we would never have achieved alone.”
“The corona pandemic has shown the importance of connectivity and digitalization for lives and livelihoods. As societies are reshaped, we must now strive for growth that addresses the climate challenge and is based on the fundamental principles of sustainability, such as the respect of human rights and equal opportunity. Working across sectors, and with governments, to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals, is more important than ever. Together we can achieve so much more.”
President & CEO, Finnair Group (FI)
“Sustainability is a key driver in Finnair’s strategy – it means minimizing environmental impacts, having equal encounters with people and ensuring sustainable business. Our long-term target is carbon neutrality, and we work every day to reduce the CO2 emissions of our operations, together with our personnel, our partners, customers and other stakeholders. Several of the UN Sustainable Development Goals are directly relevant to our operations, and I'm proud to join this commitment to work together for them.”
“To be successful in the coming decades, companies must be part of the response to the great challenges facing the world. We are inspired and guided in our activities by the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals and believe collaboration between governments and companies committed to long-term sustainable value creation will help make change happen.”
Árni Oddur Þórðarsson
“We, as leaders in global businesses, need to walk the talk and align our vision and execution towards the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. Every day, team Marel is guided by a clear vision where we envisage a world where food is affordable for everyone and produced in a sustainable way. In partnership with our customers and suppliers we are transforming the way food is processed.”
“The transport and logistics sector has a decisive role to play in contributing to a sustainable future – our sector is part of the challenge but this also means we are part of the solution. Sustainability at Posten Norge is about creating long-term viability through efficient resource management. We have taken significant steps to reduce our impact on climate change over the last 10 years and we will continue to work towards our ambitious goal to only use renewable energy sources in 2025. Aligning our efforts with the UN’s SDGs is important as it creates a common global framework that will accelerate sustainability efforts – we have no time to lose.’’
Kristin Skogen Lund
"In the coming decade, sustainability will no longer be optional, it will be a prerequisite for developing our business and for remaining profitable. Over the past 20 years the world has been digitized, a process in which Schibsted has been in the front seat and will continue to be. Now it is time to use this expertise to create sustainable solutions. At Schibsted we take pride in offering digital solutions for some of the most pressing issues in society, from independent journalism to second-hand consumption and online tools that allow users to make sound financial decisions. We believe that the best possible way of meeting today’s challenges contributing to the 2030 Agenda is by doing what we do best as sustainably as possible."