UN/ISDR Announces Private Sector Commitment to Address Disaster Vulnerability

11 May 2011: The UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UN/ISDR) has announced that the finance, insurance and construction sectors have jointly committed to tackle disaster vulnerability at the Third Session of the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction.

Private sector representatives have adopted a "Statement of Commitment by the Private Sector for Disaster Prevention, Resilience and Risk Reduction," calling for action on "five essentials for business in disaster risk reduction (DRR)." WillisRe, Credit Suisse, Titan America, Cisco Internet Business Solutions Group and MunichRe called on fellow members of the private sector to: build partnerships to analyze the root causes of non-resilient activity; leverage private sector expertise in construction, communications, financing, transport and contingency planning; spread knowledge about risk, prediction, forecasting and early warning; assist governments to conduct risk assessments; and help develop standards and procedures for enhancing resilience.

In the statement, the private sector also commits voluntarily to: create awareness within and outside their organizations; identify vulnerability and their root causes in their areas of activity and influence; invest in functional resilience and apply risk reduction and management principles in their decisions within their businesses and, to the extent possible, in their sectors, supply chains, client bases, and global networks; and make disaster risk reduction (DRR) and resilience building an integral part of their sustainable development strategy, goals and programmes.

The Third Session of the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction is taking place from 9-13 May 2011, in Geneva, Switzerland, bringing together delegates from 175 governments and over 176 regional and national organizations. The Platform is focusing on the links between the rising cost of disasters, how local communities adapt to climate change, and the status of poverty eradication efforts before the 2015 deadline set by the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA). [UN/ISDR Press Release] [Statement of Commitment by the Private Sector[IISD RS Coverage of the Meeting]