The Islamic Reporting Initiative (IRI) and its members have been raising awareness for the UN Sustainable Development Goals

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iri-logoDuring the Global Goals Week, running from 18 to 24 September, the Islamic Reporting Initiative (IRI) and its members have been raising awareness for the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

These goals – also referred to as ‘Global Goals’ – were adopted in 2015 as part of the UN 2030 agenda for sustainable development, and include 17 goals to end poverty, fight inequality and injustice, and tackle climate change by 2030.

The IRI was established by and for organizations across all sectors as an independent not-for-profit organization to guide businesses in delivering on the UN Sustainable Development Goals by building on the strengths of Islamic values and principles. It has a membership base across more than 50 countries and is a strong supporter of the UN Global Compact, which emphasizes the importance of ‘making the global goals local business.’

Various comments have been received recently from IRI members around the world.

Jadat Itqan Consulting of Saudi Arabia works closely with both government organizations and businesses in the Kingdom. A spokesman stated, ‘We find the Global Goals of extreme importance, because they provide a globally agreed-upon vision that is practical, mutual and well-researched. Furthermore, they ease the efforts of development planning alignment to various governments and institutions.’

PT AJA Sertifikasi of Indonesia views the Global Goals as a series of signposts to the future, each vitally important in its own right. ‘We live with sustainability through our certification work in the forestry and palm oil sectors, but that’s just part of Goal 11, Sustainable Cities and Communities, with which we are closely involved due to being the accredited independent auditor for Bandung, the world’s first certified Human Rights City.’

Professor Brahim Bessaïs, Director-General of the Research and Technology Centre of Energy in Tunisia, said, ‘Given the current challenges facing the fields of energy production and sustainable development, establishing affordable and clean energy strategies is of prime importance. The promising research scope needed to tackle future challenges is fascinating. Promoting and reinforcing affordable and clean energy, one of the 17 Global Goals on which our organization is focusing, is an essential enterprise that can enable researchers, engineers and industrialists to share their experiences worldwide and discuss recent developments and the potential breakthrough innovation.’

Aytakin Asgarova, coordinator of the Climate Change and Development NGO Alliance in Baku, Azerbaijan, stressed the pressing need for innovation and cooperation, stating, ‘We are all part of the very last chance to address climate change, keep Earth as a living planet, and create the world in which we wish to live. All this depends on our shared responsibilities, and it depends on our governments, businesses, civil societies, communities, citizens and the honesty of individuals. We must be sincere and truthful in order to succeed with sustainable development goals.’ IRI advisory council member Rianne ten Veen, of the United Kingdom, agrees: ‘Businesses have strategic plans; people have dreams, and KPIs – and of course we need sustainable development goals for our home planet too; try counting your money without access to oxygen!’

The Foundation for International Human Rights Reporting Standards (FIHRRST), an international organization in Indonesia dedicated to the fulfilment of human rights, recognizes the Global Goals as a series of targets that, linked together, will benefit the well-being of all. “Perhaps no single goal is closer to our heart than Goal 14, Life Below Water, linking as it does to our continuing project with the government which is developing a system of certification to establish a sustainable fisheries industry in Indonesian waters while fully respecting the human rights of all involved.”

Abdulhaq Niazi, Director of Today’s Afghanistan Conciliation Trust (TACT) stated that the Global Goals were important ‘because they provide humanity with a guide on how to improve our world. TACT is focusing on the 16th Goal to improve the government infrastructure in war-torn Afghanistan.’

Moores Rowland of Indonesia concludes ‘Perhaps the Global Goals represent the attributes of a perfect world, but without taking that first step we can never succeed. That’s also true of the human rights journey of Moores Rowland Indonesia, and while we’re still only part way down the road we strongly believe that Goal 17, Partnerships For The Goals, is the only way forward, for the more of us that share our attributes the closer we’ll get to the ultimate aim.’

To mark Global Goals Week in Mozambique, IRI member MB Consulting provided free support to FEMME and its members, helping them increase women access to the formal market. FEMME is a local organization established to advance girls and women in business and management.

The IRI invites everyone to join the Global Goals week on social media, to share the word and to work hand-in-hand towards making the world a better place. @IRIstandards #GlobalGoals