• Tuesday, July 16, 2024
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NESG, UNGC stress role of supply chain transparency to business success


The need for managers and operators of businesses to ensure transparency in supply chain management has been highlighted by stakeholders as a critical tool for business sustainability.

At a workshop in Lagos, organised by the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG) in collaboration with the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC), the speakers stressed the need for businesses to deepen their oversight capacity on their supply chains in order to ensure integrity and transparency in their overall processes.

A supply chain is a system of organisations, people, activities, information, and resources involved in moving a product or service from suppliers to customers.

Folusho Phillips, chairman, NESG, speaking at the event on Wednesday themed ‘Supply Chain Transparency and Business Sustainability’ , said the promoters of business at all levels recognised that the supply chain is very strategic to business success. “This is because from pre-production through production is a long chain carrying products and services to the market, and which determines how successful an investment will be.

“A key factor will be how successful business transactions support sustainability processes,” he said, adding that “Of course business integrity and transparency are key factors in business sustainability. Corporate corruption creates ripples beyond the initial compromises and goes on to exert extraordinary impacts against business survival, growth and sustainability,” he said.

Noting that anti-corruption is one of the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) ten sustainability principles meant to promote business growth to scale, Phillips said it requires that businesses engage in transparent transactions at every point and promotes the emerging inter-governmental and non-governmental responses against corruption in the corporate area.

Olufemi Olarewaju, managing director, Centre for Public Policy Alternatives, said with the globalisation of businesses, supply chain had become very critical, adding that the criticality of supply chain now means that there has to be transparency. “I have to as a Nigerian business for example let an international business know what I do, and by knowing what I do they can now decide whether they want to engage with me or not.”

“You cannot over-emphasise the role of supply chain transparency because everything lies on the movement of goods and services. It is very difficult for us to break into the mold of being able to do business with major organisations like Wal Mart because our distribution channels and the processes that go into it are very opaque. Interest and leadership has to come from both the public and private sectors,” he said.

Michael Lakota, chief executive officer, Siemens Nigeria, earlier in his goodwill message, stated that there was need to join forces and resources to promote a culture of transparency in supply chain management to promote business sustainability.

On her part, Uto Ukpanah, company secretary, MTN Nigeria, says supply chain sustainability is increasing becoming a focus, adding that the sustainability plan of MTN revolves around creating economic value for all stakeholders.

“The Nigerian Local Network of the UNGC is currently hosted at the offices of the NESG. Among its other activities, it has been implementing the Siemens Integrity initiative, meant to drum up collective action coalition against corruption within the business community,” said Phillips.