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Press Release: United Nations Group of Friends for Sustainable Transport - New York

The Global Sustainability Supply Chain Student Competition welcomes the endorsement from the UN Group of Friends for Sustainable Transport.

On December 5, 2022 the United Nations Group of Friends for Sustainable Transport held its second meeting in New York. The meeting was chaired by Mr. Ata Eyeberdyev, the Council of the Permanent Mission of Turkmenistan to the United Nations. During the meeting, Dr. Igor Runov, Executive Secretary of the International Centre of Transport Diplomacy (ICTD), informed participants about two most recent groundbreaking initiatives - the launch of the Global Transit Document (GTrD) and International Student Competition on Sustainability of supply chains. 

Mr. Chung Tam, President of the Global Supply Chain Classroom (GSCC) then informed participants about the “Global Supply Chain Sustainability Student Contest”. The following summary regarding this initiative has been written into UN Group of Friends Meeting Minutes and distributed to the Member States.

"This Competition invites graduate and undergraduate students from universities around the World to develop innovative solutions to real – world challenges facing the global supply chain. The Competition was announced in October 2022 in Dushanbe and will take place during the 2023-2024 academic years.

The motto of Student Contest is ”Think Global, Act Local”. The aim – to produce an action-oriented and practical plan for implementation of innovative sustainable supply chain solutions in home region and to demonstrate its application and impact on a global scale. Three stages of Contest includes: (1) Teams will submit a project proposal with the problem analysis and solutions; (2) Finalists from each region will present their projects virtually to a judging panel. Regional winners will be selected by the judges; (3) Regional winner will present their solutions to an International Judge’s Panel (remotely) and the overall winner will be selected. Finalists will have opportunity to present projects to angel investors. The participants of the meeting were invited to transmit the information about the Contest among interested universities and invite them to join the global competition in 2023/2024 along with other 100 universities in all parts of the world."

The Secretariat of the Group of Friends of Sustainable Transport followed with a letter to the ambassadors asking them to invite their universities to participate in the Global Sustainability Supply Chain Student Competition.

“ In line with our proactive and practical approach, we kindly ask you to forward attached invitations to appropriate universities in your country and invite them to take part in an international student Contest on sustainability of the global supply chains in 2023/2024.”

The organizing committee of the Global Sustainability Supply Chain Student Competition greatly appreciates the support of the UN Group of Friends for Sustainable Transport. It brings global recognition to the competition and important role of the youth to take action on supply chain sustainability. We look forward to working together to promote the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

For more information, please contact us at

About the UN Group of Friends for Sustainable Transport:

The United Nations Group of Friends for Sustainable Transport was launched on July 6, 2022 by the Permanent Mission of Turkmenistan to the United Nations at a meeting attended by more than 90 representatives of UN member states. The overall aim was to raise awareness of the importance of sustainable transport, and exchange of ideas and views, best practices etc. on national and regional levels.

The first-ever United Nations Global Sustainable Transport Conference was convened in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan on November 26, 2016 by UN Secretary-General Ban-Ki Moon. The conference brought together key stakeholders from Governments, the UN system and other international organizations, the private sector, and civil society to engage in a dialogue that emphasizes the integrated and cross-cutting nature of sustainable transport and its multiples roles in supporting the achievement of the SDGs. All modes of transport – road, rail, aviation, ferry and maritime – were addressed. The outcome was the “Ashgabat Statement” supporting cleaner, greener transportation – from local transit systems to worldwide multimodal networks was endorsed by more than 50 countries.

The second United Nations Global Sustainable Transport Conference, themed on “Sustainable Transport, Sustainable Development”, took place from October 14 to 16 2021 in Beijing, China. UN Secretary-General António Guterres stressed that “The next nine years must see a global shift towards renewable energy. Sustainable transport is central to that transformation”. An important outcome of the conference was the “Beijing Statement of the Second United Nations Global Sustainable Transport Conference“ which underpins the importance of transport for achieving the global climate and sustainable development goals and calls for more and enhanced international cooperation, as well as capacity-building and knowledge exchange among countries to advance sustainable transport technology and innovation and learn from good practices.

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