On 23 February, Secretary-General Kofi Annan addressed a meeting of business leaders in Tokyo, hosted by the Japan Business Federation.
“It is very exciting to see the Global Compact blossom in this country. Japanese companies, already established leaders in the world economy in a wide range of industries and sectors, are demonstrating ever stronger leadership in the field of corporate citizenship”, the Secretary-General said.
The Secretary-General called on all Japanese companies and business groups to support the Global Compact by committing themselves explicitly to its principles. He said the Global Compact Network Japan, created in December 2003, will be instrumental in driving the initiative forward. The Network will develop an approach specifically designed to meet the needs of Japanese business leaders, and strengthen partnerships with business organizations and other corporate-responsibility groups in Japan and around the world.
“Through the active engagement of Japanese companies and other stakeholders, I am optimistic that the Global Compact will provide a useful platform to advance corporate citizenship and help produce a more sustainable and inclusive world economy, so that globalization’s benefits can be shared by everyone, including the world’s poor”.