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Press Release – 29 November 2017

Press release: Private sector steps up its engagement to improve resilience and support for vulnerable communities in Turkey

29 November 2017, Istanbul – The UPS Foundation, the United Nations, Turkish Enterprise and Business Confederation, the United Nations Global Compact Local Network Turkey, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, and other private sector representatives pledged in the 8thBosphorus Summit to step up their collective support to improve disaster resilience, response and recovery in Turkey through the establishment of a “ Resilient Businesses Platform” This platform will be one of 13 private sector-led networks supported by the Connecting Business Initiative (CBi) is a multi-stakeholder initiative that helps the private sector to engage with the United Nations system, national governments and civil society in a coordinated manner on crisis risk reduction, emergency preparedness, response and recovery.

“According to the Global Disaster Preparedness Center, 70% of the population in Turkey live in an area highly vulnerable to earthquakes. More than 95% of the country lies in one of the most active earthquake and landslide regions in the world. In addition, the country hosts the largest refugee population in the world.” said Irena Vojáčková-Sollorano the UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in Turkey. “Although a lot is being done, the private sector has great potential to contribute more in these areas.”

Taking these hazards into consideration, an idea for a “Resilient Businesses Platform” was introduced, aiming to connect the private sector more strategically into disaster management and humanitarian action. “The global momentum to better integrate the private sector and coordinate efforts was born in the World Humanitarian Summit in Istanbul last year. Uniting these efforts with “Saglam KOBI” the Business Disaster Resiliency program established in Turkey in 2013 byThe UPS Foundation, World Economic Forum, CSR Turkey and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundationwill make a real difference and get to greater scale.” said Eduardo Martinez, President of The UPS Foundation and UPS Chief Diversity &Inclusion Officer. “The new platform will continue to enhance the business continuity of small- and medium-sized enterprises and it will also enhance the resiliency of more communities by reaching across more stakeholders including, businesses and civil society organizations.” he added.

“Coordinating the private sector efforts better, planning and preparing before emergencies strike, sharing information and connecting to the national and UN System efforts can significantly improve the private sector resilience and help to provide more meaningful support to the most pressing needs.” added ArdaBatu, Secretary General of the Turkish Enterprise and Business Confederation TURKONFED. “We have 40,000 small- and medium-sized companies as members of TURKONFED. For long-term resilience of the economy we must include them as key actors.”

“The idea of collective action is very much aligned with the United Nations Global Compact Local Network approach. We promote responsible corporate citizenship in Turkey and through our wide network can help to mobilize action.” Mustafa Seçkin, Network Representative of the Global Compact Network Turkey and Regional Vice President Marketing, Unilever Turkey, said.

The “Resilient Businesses Platform” is open for all private sector to join. To learn more, please visit www.connectingbusiness.org.

Contact information:
Huseyin Yilmaz, CSR Turkey Director, +905326831134, huseyin.yilmaz@kssd.org
FaikUyanik, UNDP İstanbul Regional Hub, +905304992548, faik.uyanik@undp.org

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