| New York/Munich. During the Alliance of Civilizations Group of Friends Ministerial meeting held on Friday at the United Nations headquarters, a major public-private partnership between BMW Group and the UN Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) was renewed. Mr. Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, the UN High Representative for UNAOC and Mr. Bill McAndrews, BMW Group Vice President, signed the agreement at the conclusion of the meeting which was attended by the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, ministers and delegates from over 100 countries, and the heads of international organizations as well as media representatives. Mr. McAndrews was participating in the ministerial meeting which was convened by Mr. Al-Nasser during the 68th Session of the UN General Assembly.
This renewal brings an exemplary shared project, The Intercultural Innovation Award, to a new level of activity, thereby highlighting the potential of public-private partnerships in furthering the international community's goals. The Intercultural Innovation Award is a global venture, to identify and provide monetary and in-kind support to grassroots initiatives that are working to alleviate identity-based tensions and conflicts around the world. Last year, the award benefitted over 140,000 individuals around the world. This represented a two-fold increase from the previous year. Additionally, since its inception, the award has tripled the number of communities it is helping people in.
The two parties believe that this new model of collaboration between the UN and the private sector creates deeper impact, as both provide their respective expertise to ensure the growth of each project. Crucially, this renewal means an increase in the level of support that will be provided to the initiatives identified through the award. Both partners manage the award jointly - mobilizing their resources, time, and networks to support the awardees.
'We are convinced that engagement with corporate, media, and civil society sectors is crucial to our shared goal of living peacefully in a diverse world. These sectors innovate; they are close to the people, and they understand the dynamics of the complex world in which we live. In this regard, BMW Group has been and continues to be a great partner to the UNAOC,' said UNAOC High Representative Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser.
Bill McAndrews stated 'This partnership has turned into a very special cooperation grounded in our shared goals and commitment. The BMW Group has increased its funding to underscore our commitment to and belief in the cooperation between the UNAOC and the BMW Group. We are convinced of the value of this unique cooperation. We look to the future of our partnership with great pride and pleasure.'