At a ceremony held on 30 June 2022, at the premises of Ministry of Programming (MoP), fourth generation of SDG Business Pioneers in BiH was promoted. This Award is granted as part of the programme “Translating the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Framework in Bosnia and Herzegovina into sustainable and inclusive growth” (SDG2BIH), a joint initiative funded by Sweden and implemented by UNDP in partnership with UNICEF and UN Women under the overall United Nations’ support to the authorities in Bosnia and Herzegovina to implement the SDG Framework in BiH.
A competition for SDG Business Pioneers is held on an annual basis with the aim to promote the efforts and engagement of the private sector in the field of sustainable development in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The 2022 Award was focused on the companies that create and retain decent jobs and actively reduce their impact of the environment. This year, MoP stepped in as co-host of the event in their new role as SDG Business Mentors, having won the award in their category in 2020 and 2021.
SDG Business Pioneers Award continues to grow each year, reaching record-breaking number of applicants – 85 companies submitted 103 applications! In 2021, 75 companies submitted 106 aplications, in 2020, 71 companies submitted 106 applications, while in 2019 there were 44 companies with 55 applications.
“Being one of the top countries in the world regarding implementation of the SDGs, Sweden is happy to be able to share our experiences and support others in their efforts to meet these global objectives aimed at creating a more sustainable future for all of us. To reach these goals the private sector’s engagement is crucial and it is important that we honour the business leaders in Bosnia and Herzegovina who are drivers of sustainable development and growth and to encourage them to continue on this positive trajectory.”Johanna Strömquist, Swedish Ambassador to Bosnia and Herzegovina
SDG Business Pioneers Awards are awarded for the themes “People” and “Resources and Environment”, and the overall winner for Bosnia and Herzegovina is selected among the companies that applied in both themes.
“This year’s SDG Business Pioneers Award ceremony was something special. The stories of real impact are a great reminder of the power businesses have to create a better future,” said Rešad Začina, co-founder and co-CEO of Ministry of Programming, a two-time winner of the SDG Business Pioneer Award.
“We’re amazed by all companies participating tonight and wish them all the best in turning their sustainability goals into a reality. The power of SDGs that we have witnessed first-hand, as well as the stories that we’ve heard from others, prove one thing: sustainable business practices are becoming more important than ever. This event is a beautiful way to start a new chapter in the MOP’s story at our new headquarters.”Rešad Začina, co-founder and co-CEO of Ministry of Programming
In the theme “People”, the awards are granted to those companies that are inspirational to others in terms of creation of decent jobs and talent retention, and this year’s winners are Dekonta BH in the category of micro-size businesses, SEEBA in the category of small-size businesses, Klika in the category of medium-size businesses and Mistral Technologies in the category of large businesses. In the category “Resources and Environment” the winners for micro and small-size businesses are Šumska tajna and ETMax. In this category, the winners for medium and large-size companies are Lukavac Cement and Coca-Cola HBC B-H. SDG Business Pioneer in BiH for 2022, or the overall winner of this year’s competition, is the company which also scored the highest number of points for its abiding by GRI standards (Global Reporting Initiative) and realisation of SDGs, namely, dm drogerie markt.
SDG Business Pioneers Award recognises and emphasises the efforts made by private sector companies in terms of realisation of SDGs in B&H and motivation to new participants in the private sector to include SDGs in their business models. The official partner for this award is Foreign Trade Chamber of Bosnia and Herzegovina. This partnership aims at improving the cooperation and raising awareness of the importance of sustainable businesses, circular economy, digitalisation and decarbonisation in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
“Tonight, we celebrate good companies from Bosnia and Herzegovina that root their businesses on sustainable business models that contribute to implementation of BIH’s commitment to implement Sustainable Development Goals and Agenda 2030. We started this initiative in 2019 and, each year, the interest of the private sector grows. UNDP’s partnership with Sweden is focused on translating the ambitious, global goals of Agenda 2030 into a concrete action plan for this country by bring relevant stakeholders together.”Steliana Nedera, UNDP Resident Representative in BiH
This year’s SDG Business Pioneers Award is focused on the companies that create decent jobs and retain talent while working actively towards decarbonisation of their business activities. 34 companies entered the final round where Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) standards were used as the basis of evaluation methodology for the received 103 applications, and the evaluation process was led by an independent panel of experts led by Professor Vjekoslav Domljan.