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FG to promote sustainable ethical business practices

...As Nigeria launches ISO 20400 Sustainable Supply Chain Procurement School

The Federal Government has pledged collaboration with relevant international organisations in promoting the adoption of sustainable and ethical business practices in Nigeria.

Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Adeniyi Adebayo made this pledge at the launch of the ISO 20400 Sustainable Supply Chain and Procurement School which is the first of its kind in Africa in Abuja.

The School is an initiative aimed at building the much-needed capacity on the supply chain and procurement challenges while developing strategic ways of mitigating them to reduce risk exposures for organisations.

Adebayo said the school of such calibre has the potential to transform sustainable procurement standards within Africa and set the new standard for global best practices, expressing delight that Nigeria was the first country in the black continent to embrace the initiative.

“It is clear that International Network for Corporate Social Responsibility (IN-CSR) has played a pivotal role in this initiative since its inception. The network of advocates, consultants, and auditors promote sustainable best practices in the continent through various capacity building and training programmes.

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“This School will deliver a measurable value to businesses as it provides them with the opportunity to incorporate sustainable policies and practices as promoted by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals”, he said.

In his presentation, Eustace Onuegbu, Head, Supply Chain Sustainability School, Africa and President of IN-CSR said the idea behind the School was to upscale and make sure that the practitioners in Africa are adapting to the global best practices.

“Supply chain is not new, right from the time immemorial and people and goods move from point A to point B. Supply Chain involves the production of raw materials, if it’s agriculture production for instance, from the time you get it out from the ground unto the final consumer.

“So, that’s the process of the supply chain. So every organisation, whether you produce services or goods, you have an ecosystem that is called the supply chain. How do you now ensure that these supply chains are aligned to the three key pillars of sustainability which are social, environmental, and economic?

“How do you ensure that the framework is implemented to provide for not just today but the future generations? So that’s why IN-SCR has come together with the two other organisations with this initiation to start the Supply Chain School in Africa”, he stated.

Onuegbu said he was motivated by the fact that Africa has finally started putting its house together through the African Free Trade Continental Agreement (AFTA) which according to the World Bank report will reduce extreme poverty by over half after implementation in 2035.

“We now want to make sure that this Sustainability agenda starts from Nigeria, being the biggest economy should also benefit not only when we have wars in other countries that we go. Other activities happen across African countries that Nigeria needs to drive and benefit from it because it will drive investment into the country”, he added.

Earlier, Shaun McCarthy Obe, Chair of Supply Chain Sustainability School United Kingdom, said the School was all about finding a common approach to developing supplier sustainable knowledge since it started in 2012.

“The number is quite impressive, maybe 55, 000 people now since 2012 participating in some way in the learning in the school, 1.6 million pupils per annum and common objective is to learn more about sustainability through the supply chain in the sector”, Obe noted.

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