The Santa Cruz Declaration on Local Green Enterprises

Signed November 3rd 2017

Entrepreneurs at the Santa Cruz green market
Entrepreneurs at the Santa Cruz green market

The Green Economy Coalition's Global Meeting for 2017 saw the drafting and launch of the Santa Cruz Declaration on Local Green Enterprises - a call to action from manufacturers, producers, business owners, entrepreneurs, innovators, and local communities in recognition of the vital importance of smaller businesses to addressing global challenges. Read the full text below:

The Santa Cruz Declaration on Local Green Enterprise
  1. We the undersigned are a group of manufacturers, producers, business owners, entrepreneurs, innovators, local communities, and the agencies that support them from Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Cuba, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Haiti, India, Jamaica, Mongolia, Peru, Saint Lucia, Senegal, South Africa, Trinidad and Tobago and Uganda. 
  2. Gathered in Santa Cruz, Trinidad and Tobago on 3 November 2017, we have come together in recognition that local green enterprises stand at the frontline of the transition to inclusive, green and resilient economies and achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. We are here to demonstrate and build support from our respective countries, regions and spheres of influence for local green enterprises to lead, shape and accelerate the transition.
  3. Every community on the planet faces, to a greater or lesser extent, a common set of intertwined socioeconomic challenges. Vulnerabilities to climate and natural disasters, collapsing biodiversity, unequal and stagnant economic development, and exclusionary governance. 
  4. Micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) account for 95% of the world’s private enterprises, and provide 60% of private sector employment.  We are the engines of prosperity, job creation and innovation.  We deliver economic, social and environmental benefits to our communities and countries.  We are the economies of today and tomorrow. 
  5. Learning how to build greener, fairer and more resilient economies is the biggest challenge of our times, but it cannot be achieved without empowering SMEs as innovative local actors to deliver social and environmental transformation.
  6. We stand together in solidarity. We invite fellow business people, governments, civil society, academia and local communities to partner with us. We offer the opportunity to:


    1. Partner with green SMEs and build a social movement in service of inclusive green and resilient economies that deliver local value and sustainable livelihoods, all around the world.
    2. Champion SMEs as an engine of disruptive innovation, invention and creative development. Most of the businesses which will drive the economies of 2040 don’t exist yet, and all of them will have started out as SMEs.
    3. Rethink systems within our sphere of direct and indirect influence that affect the functioning of SMEs, sustainable practices and business models.