PRIVATE SECTOR AND DEVELOPMENT
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development generates a unique sphere of opportunity for companies wishing to strengthen their business models through more stable and robust integration into the social and environmental contexts in which they operate.
In this new context, the private sector is called upon to build the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) together with the other stakeholders in areas such as inclusive growth, sustainable consumption and production patterns, access to renewable energy, sustainable management of water and sanitation, innovation, and empowerment of women and gender equality.
The IV Master Plan for Spanish Cooperation 2013-2016, devotes a section to the incorporation of the private sector as an ally
in promoting human development. Companies, including those from partner
countries, can play an important role in Spanish Development Cooperation. Four pillars
for the incorporation of the private sector into Spanish Cooperation are
proposed: communication, training and capacity-building; generating incentives
and an enabling environment for action; designing and implementing pilot programmes;
and creating an organisational unity to be a driving force, as well as a point
of reference, for the system.
The Master Plan is committed to advancing towards cooperation with a more flexible structure and a more dynamic adaptive capacity, in order to encourage collaborative action between the private sector and the system's other stakeholders. Development Cooperation needs to be involved in Spanish companies' internationalisation processes in our partner countries, so that these countries may find the incentives and support required to act in a socially responsible way.
In order to design and implement different pilot initiatives, according to the Master Plan, an AECID Protocol for Managing Public-Private Partnerships for Development (PPPD) has been designed. AECID understands PPPDs as voluntary, collaborative and formal relationships amongst the AECID, the Public Administrations of partner countries and one or more private sector, civil society or academic entities, whether from Spain, from partner countries or from third countries, in which a common goal, with demonstrable development impact, is established, and in which responsibilities are jointly defined and resources, risks and achievements are jointly taken on board.
Work is currently being carried out, at different stages, in least 27 partnerships or stable collaborations with the private sector, involving implementation processes as well as identification and medium-term assessment: 16 in Latin America and the Caribbean, 10 under the Directorate of Cultural and Scientific Relations (9 of them sponsoring assistantships) and one promoted by the Humanitarian Action Office at refugee camps in Ethiopia.
Given that it is an instrument that is prioritised in differentiated cooperation strategies involving medium-high income countries, its use in cooperation with Latin America and the Caribbean must be highlighted, particularly in countries which are redesigning development cooperation relations and those that are signing "New Generation Agreements".
In recent years, the Directorate for Cooperation with Latin America and the Caribbean has promoted PPPDs, through:
- Pilot experiences (Peru, Acobamba, 2009);
- Financing of several diagnostic studies in various countries: Mexico, Panama, Dominican Republic, Guatemala and Peru;
- Establishing and implementing an AECID protocol for the development of PPPDs.
Currently underway are several PPPDs, especially in Mexico. Other countries include Colombia, Peru and Panama.
Another tool that has contributed decisively to pilot initiatives is the
call for Development Cooperation Action grants for implementing innovation
projects for development, a call launched in 2014 and open to all stakeholders
(private sector, social sector, and academic and research sector). The call favours
the establishment of consortia or alliances among them all. In 2014, six company-led projects were financed, two of which were grouped
together with academia, as well as four more projects in which companies
participated in a consortium but without leading it; two projects were financed
with social sector entities, and two with academic and research entities. In
2015, five projects led by private sector stakeholders were financed, one of which
was grouped together with a university, in addition to four other projects in
which companies participated in a consortium, with two players from the social
sector and another two players from the academic and research sector.
Cooperation with the business sector through different initiatives and