The United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS)

Furthering private-sector initiatives for sustainable development

UN leaders mark progress in meeting funding needs for development projects.

Ms. Grete Faremo, UN Under-Secretary-General and Mr. Daniel Thomas, Communications Director and Spokesperson of the President of the UN General Assembly led a high-level event in New York to highlight the progress made by UNOPS on its social impact investing initiative, launch UNOPS seed capital facility and showcase a pilot crowdfunding platform.

"It is clear. To achieve global goals we need the private sector to invest" said Grete Faremo, UNOPS Executive Director. "Social impact investing is core to these aims" Ms. Faremo continued, describing UNOPS initiative as central to efforts to find new means of financing a future for all.

Current estimates suggest that $5-7 trillion worth of annual investment will be needed to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, over and above contributions from national governments.

UNOPS – having a mandate from the UN General Assembly to act as a central resource in infrastructure, procurement and project management – is encouraging and facilitating private sector investment into sustainable development projects focused on renewable energy, social housing, water and sanitation. Peter Thomson, the new President of the United Nations General Assembly, welcomed the announcement. "Promoting the effective implementation of the sustainable development goals is my central priority", said Mr Daniel Thomas, speaking on his behalf.

He also expressed his support for UNOPS involvement in social impact investing initiatives, including associated activities such as crowdfunding and the promotion of global innovation.

"Humanity can no longer afford to decouple financial decisions from the social and environmental impacts they trigger. All stakeholders must overcome their 'business as usual' model and work in a co-ordinated manner.

"As the UN's implementation arm, UNOPS is well-positioned to help structure these vital investments" he added.

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