He stressed that a strong message from the business community to Governments worldwide can make a powerful difference in reaching an agreement in Copenhagen in December on a new pact to succeed the Kyoto Protocol on greenhouse gas emissions.
Mr. Ban has been exhorting nations to “seal the deal” on a new climate change pact, warning that cost of inaction will be far greater than the cost of taking decisive action now.
“Please join the UN ‘Seal the Deal’ campaign,” he told those gathered at the dinner. “Now more than ever, we need you as advocates for climate action. Explain to your Governments, your shareholders and your peers that doing the right thing for the climate is also the smart thing for global competitiveness, trade and prosperity.”
The Secretary-General also highlighted the long-running relationship between the International Chamber of Commerce and the UN, which dates back to the earliest days of the Organization.
Today, the group works with the full range of UN departments, agencies, funds and programmes, across the UN agenda, he noted. “We have both benefited from these long and varied ties.
“At a time when the world faces multiple crises – food, fuel, finance, flu and more – our cooperation is more important than ever,” he added.