The Ghanaian private sector has issued a statement to its government, calling for concrete action to encourage responsible business conduct and sustainable reporting. The call was set out in a joint statement at the conclusion of a two-day workshop in Kumasi on 18 and 19 September.
The workshop was jointly organised by the Ghanaian Employers’ Association and the International Organisation of Employers with the support of the European Union. The Global Reporting Initiative and Centro Vincular cooperated in the design and delivery.
Designed to raise awareness and deepen understanding of the main international business and human rights initiatives that can guide and support enterprises to conduct themselves responsibly and engage in transparent reporting, the workshop followed similar events that took place last year in Jakarta and Johannesburg.
Presentations were delivered by business and human rights experts from the IOE, GRI and Centro Vincular, and participants were encouraged to exchange experiences and best practices, as well as to explore gaps where targeted measures were needed for businesses to improve outcomes.
The joint statement reaffirms the commitment of the Ghanaian business community to conduct itself in line with international standards and stakeholder expectations, and to make its rightful contribution to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.
But it also highlights the need for the Ghanaian government to do more, including facilitating the transition from the informal to the formal economy; reducing red tape; incentivizing responsible business behaviour; and creating an enabling environment for all companies in their efforts to operate responsibly.
In addition to ensuring fair and effective law enforcement, and facilitating training, capacity building and awareness raising, the joint business statement invites the government, as a pivotal actor in society, “to lead by example”.
A survey of the participants is currently underway to garner feedback on the effectiveness of the workshop. The findings will be analysed to make any necessary adjustments to the design of future workshops.
Please refer to the links in the side panel for the draft statement, as well as the presentations and other useful information.
Please contact Mr Peter Hall at the IOE via the link in the side panel if you have any questions or comments.