The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and Hisense International Co. Ltd. today signed a partnership at a ceremony in UNEP Headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya, which will work to promote and strengthen the brand profile and global positioning of the SEED Award
The SEED Award is a component of the SEED Initiative programme, which supports innovative and small-scale entrepreneurs worldwide who integrate environmental and social benefits into their business models.
Hisense International, which is headquartered in Qingdao, China, recognizing the SEED Initiative as a global partnership for action on sustainable development and the Green Economy, today committed US$600,000 to this award programme for the three-year period lasting from 2011 – 2013.
Hisense, which was established in 1969 and ranks among the top five electronic manufacturers in China, is also the first Chinese company to sponsor the SEED Award.
Achim Steiner, UN Under-Secretary General and UNEP Executive Director, said: 'The SEED Award winners are shining examples of what can be achieved through the lens of the Green Economy and with very little in terms of funds but an extraordinary amount of innovation and hard work. The challenge for the coming year, as governments prepare for the crucial Rio+20 conference in 2012, is how to scale-up and accelerate the kinds of transitions that SEED represents. Companies have a lot to gain from partnering with civil society and public sector initiatives in order to catalyze change. Hisense is today demonstrating how its commitment to corporate and social responsibility is evolving, underlining that striving to achieve sustainability in the 21st century is as much a developing country agenda as it should be a developed-country goal.'
The goal of SEED is to support the ability of small-scale businesses to scale up or replicate their activities in a way that helps local economies and communities while promoting the sustainable management of natural resources and ecosystems and reducing poverty.
Winners of the annual award cover a diverse range of promising business models which tackle poverty and environmental stewardship in areas such as water and waste management, sustainable energy, recycling, and fish farming.
'Hisense is proud to be a global partner in this SEED Award. Protecting the environment is very important for us and for the Green Economy of today and the future,' said Cheng Kaixun, Chief Marketing Officer for the Hisense Group.
The SEED Initiative programme was founded by UNEP, UN Development Programme and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) at the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, South Africa.