UNIDO and Mitsui to raise awareness of environmental impact of plastic leakage and advocate for more sustainable alternatives to single-use plastic products in Africa

UNIDO and Mitsui to raise awareness of environmental impact of plastic leakage and advocate for more sustainable alternatives to single-use plastic products in Africa

TOKYO, 7 October 2019 – The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and Mitsui & Co. Ltd. (hereafter referred to as “Mitsui”) have agreed on a collaboration and partnership framework to work to promote awareness of more environmentally sustainable alternatives to single-use plastic products in Africa. The aim is to minimize leakage of plastic waste into the environment with an inclusive and sustainable industrial development initiative as a follow-up to the TICAD7 Yokohama Declaration 2019.

UNIDO Deputy to the Director General, Hiroshi Kuniyoshi, and Mitsui’s Chief Operating Officer (COO) for Performance Materials Business Unit, Takeo Kato, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that will enhance and strengthen cooperation to leverage each other’s expertise. 

UNIDO and Mitsui will jointly conduct studies on the plastic value chain in several African countries, and jointly advocate and develop awareness of the issue of plastic leakage into the environment and advocate for less use of plastics and/or more use of environmentally sustainable alternative materials instead of single-use plastic products.

“With increased attention to the impact of marine plastic litter, a shift to alternatives to single-use plastics is unavoidable. Industry needs to adapt to the change, which could lead to the development of new green business models. With UNIDO’s mandate of inclusive and sustainable industrial development (ISID), we are happy to work with industries, particularly industries that are part of the plastic value chain, to develop sustainable production. I believe this MOU will contribute to working a step closer with the industries,” said UNIDO Deputy to the Director General Kuniyoshi.

“Mitsui has been working on the initiative to tackle the challenge of marine plastic litter from the business sector perspective. We are pleased to collaborate with UNIDO to conduct joint activities and contribute to achieving more a sustainable society and environment through this partnership,” said Mitsui's Kato.

UNIDO is a specialized agency of the United Nations that promotes inclusive and sustainable industrial development for poverty reduction, inclusive globalization and environmental sustainability.

The mission of Mitsui, a global trading and investment company from Japan, is to “strive to contribute to the creation of a future where the aspirations of the people can be fulfilled”.

For more information, please contact:

Nahomi Nishio

Industrial Development Expert

UNIDO Industrial Resource Efficiency Division

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