Towards inclusive business models

Our world is changing at an unprecedented pace, challenging the political, economic, societal and business norms we are used to and, as a result, the nature of our business is changing rapidly.



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2015 was a major year for sustainability in terms of global actions. The UN announced the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and several heads of States signed the Paris Agreement:

The 17 SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) and 169 targets are part of the 2030 agenda for Sustainable Development adopted by 193 Member States at the UN General Assembly Summit in September 2015. These goals are the result of an unprecedented consultative process that brought together national governments and millions of citizens from across the globe to negotiate and adopt a global path to sustainable development for the next 15 years. The SDGs are a call to action for rich, poor and middle-income countries to encourage prosperity and simultaneously protect the planet. As such, the 17 SDGs are presented in a way that they are mutually reinforcing. For example, SDG 1 "No poverty" depends on strategies that boost economic growth and meet societal needs (e.g. education, health, social protection and job opportunities), combat climate change and safeguard the environment - which are all individual SDGs too.

The Paris Agreement "COP21" was adopted by 175 parties (174 States and the European Union), on 12 December 2015. To address climate change, countries adopted the Paris Agreement to limit global temperature rise to well below 2 degrees Celsius, and even down to 1.5 °C, to mitigate the catastrophic risks and impacts associated with climate change (ref IPCC report, 2018).

To invent this new "world" that will respect human and nature, we can now say that the UN and Paris agreements have set the framework. Now it's for us, the societal players - public authorities (governments), businesses and individuals, to do our part. At PwC, we are also convinced that we have a role to play. Our purpose is to build trust in Society and to solve important problems. Sustainability issues are in our eyes very "important problems" that we could contribute to solve. It is the reason why we have built globally and locally a strong team of experts who can help you to not only deal with the challenges but also turn them into opportunities.

In Luxembourg, our focus lies especially on the following four topics:

Environmental Social and Governance factors

Entities that manage wealth have an important impact in the way they allocate money in the economy via the businesses they invest in. Embedding ESG criteria in their investment decisions has the potential to generate massive societal change and will push businesses to contribute to the global agenda if they wish to receive capital.

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Non-financial reporting

We are convinced that the value of businesses cannot be seen only through the lens of financial reporting. This is also the view of the European Union, which has issued a directive in that respect. The regulatory aspect apart, there is also a clear demand from stakeholders to understand their societal impacts and know how they are contributing towards the 17 SDGs. 

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Sustainable Finance

United Nations estimated that $5 to $7 trillion have to be invested to achieve the SDGs. If we look at the size of markets today, there is a general consensus that private sector investments need to move from millions to trillions. Private capital is becoming an increasingly important tool for global development as well as one of the biggest business opportunities.

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Climate Change

The signing of the Paris Agreement in December 2015, and the speed at which it was ratified, signals a change in the way governments are addressing climate change and national policies are put in place to accelerate the transition to a low carbon economy.

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Contact us

Valérie Arnold

Partner, Head of sustainability, PwC Luxembourg

Tel: +352 49 48 48 2285

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