27 May 2019

Venue: International Environment House I | Room 2

Organization: Geneva Environment Network

Public procurement wields enormous purchasing power, accounting for an average of 12 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in OECD countries, and up to 30 percent of GDP in many developing countries. Leveraging this purchasing power by buying more sustainable goods and services can help drive markets in the direction of sustainability, reduce the negative impacts of an organization, and produce positive benefits for the environment and society.

This was acknowledged by the international community when it included a target on sustainable public procurement in the Sustainable Development Goals. Target 12.7 focuses specifically on promoting “public procurement practices that are sustainable, in accordance with national policies and priorities”.

The UN Environment-led 2017 Global Sustainable Public Procurement Review confirms that sustainable public procurement (SPP) is progressively embraced by both national and local authorities. The Review also recognizes that, in order to transform production and consumption patterns, it will be necessary to foster collaboration among stakeholders throughout the entire value chain.

But what are the keys to making this happen? Which are the drivers, barriers, needs and expectations that promote or hold back sustainable procurement? How can we mainstream SPP in relevant fiscal, thematic and sectoral policies to increase its impacts? How do we measure the sustainability and market transformation impacts of SPP? How is UN Environment supporting member states embark on SPP?

A discussion, organized within the framework of the Geneva Environment Network, took place at the International Environment House in Geneva and tried to respond to these questions, and debate on the best way to seize the opportunities of SPP and address its challenges.


Welcome & Introduction

Fulai SHENG, Head, Economic & Fiscal Policy Unit, Resources & Markets Branch, UN Environment
Joy KIM, Economic Affairs Officer, UN Environment (moderarator)

Accelerating the shift to greener economies through sustainable procurement: opportunities and challenges
Farid YAKER, Programme Officer, UN Environment
Isabella MARRAS, Coordinator, Sustainable United Nations
Rie TSUTSUMI, Programme Officer, UN Environment
Lesya NIKOLAYEVA, Consultant, UN Environment
Maria Rosaria CECCARELLI, Director (OiC) Economic Cooperation and Trade Division, UNECE


Closing Remarks
Fulai SHENG, Head, Economic & Fiscal Policy Unit, Resources & Markets Branch, UN Environment




The event was live on Facebook.

More on Sustainable Procurement

Training on Sustainable Procurement

Sustainable United Nations & Procurement