"Inventor of Microcredit enters the Seine" Journal de Dimanche

Press Release

Photo of the historical building Les Canaux built in 1882 which has been launched by the Mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo as a Social Business House and where Yunus Centre has been given an office to help build social business in the city of Paris

Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus the invited by Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo to be the chief guest at the launching ceremony held on october 10 of Les Canaux as the "Social Business House" a magnificent building dedicated by the City of Paris to promote social business in Paris. Members of the community, representatives of leading businesses, local mayors of the city and the press attended the ceremony.

The historical building built in 1882 has served as the administrative office of the Canals of Paris. It is located in the up-and-coming the 19th Arrondisement of Paris which is a very vibrant neighborhood attractive to young people.

The Mayor of Paris has designated the office to Yunus Centre so that it can help build social business in Paris city, and also bring international attention to the project. Yunus centre has also invited Grameen Creative Lab to set up office in the building. Several other related organizations will be invited later to locate their offices in the building to build up a strong team to initiate social businesses in Paris.

Professor Yunus said in his speech at the launching ceremony that this was a historic initiative of the City of Paris, and a very important step to create a new kind of economy that is based on human values. He stressed that social business can be a tool for young people to create a world of their dreams and imagination, and this House creates an enabling environment for that. He talked about his own vision of creating a world of three zeroes - zero poverty, zero unemployment and zero net carbon emissions - with the power of youth, technology and social business. He called on the young people to imagine the world they would like to create and and go ahead and get translare Les Canaux from an inspiring symbol to a place where concrete programmes take shape for the benefit of the people of Paris.

Mayor Anne Hidalgo thanked Prof Yunus for accepting her invitation to lead the social business initiative of Paris and join her in launching the building. She referred to his quote that "poverty is not created by the poor, it is created by the institutions that we have created". The Social Business House she said is an initiative to give young people an opportunity to create their own enterprises and change their own lives and their communities in a sustainable way.

She posted her thanks to Professor Yunus in her official Facebook page, for "standing by the starts up, young entrepreneurs and social businesses in helping to create Paris as a global capital for social business".

Before the official launch, Prof Yunus and the distinguished guests were given a tour of the building Les Canaux and introduced them to 15 social entrepreneurs engaged in a variety of social businesses in Paris

According to the statement made by Mayor's office "Les Canaux is a dedicated space for all collaborative, ecological and inclusive actor working in social business in Greater Paris with objectives of generating solutions, acting as a catalyst for development, a show case for sharing experiences and pooling resources."

After the launching ceremony Professor Yunus was invited to an exclusive lunch with the Mayor, her deputy mayor, and other colleagues in Paris restaurant where they discussed about how to take the program of social business for the city of Paris forward in the coming weeks.

The headline of the news in the Journal de Dimanche an important Paris newspaper was given as "Inventor of Microcredit enters the Seine"

Photo caption 2: Mayor Anne Hidalgo of Paris greets Professor Yunus outside Lea Canaux before the launch of the social business house

Photo caption 3: Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus and Mayor Anne Hidalgo on the terrace of the Les Canaux Building where the Social Business House has been launched


20th Anniversary Celebration of Nobel Peace Prize in East Timor

Press Release (08 October, 2016)

Professor Muhammad Yunus with the President of Timor Leste, Prime Minister of Timor Leste, first lady of Timor Leste, Nobel Laureate Jose Ramos Horta and other Nobel Laureates at the opening by the President of Timor Leste of the International Conference on "Citizenship, Peace and Well Being" on the occasion of 20 years of Nobel Peace Prize for Jose Ramos Horta and Bishop Carlos Ximines Belo

Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus is in Dili Timor Leste as a Special Guest at an international conference organized by the Government of Timor Leste  on "Citizenship, Peace and Well-Being" on the occasion of the 20th Anniversary of the Nobel Peace Prize award to Jose Ramos Horta and Bishop Carlos Ximenes Belo in 1996.

On October 7 morning,  the conference was inaugurated by HE President  Taur Matan Ruak Professor Yunus was presented at the opening ceremony of the conference along with five other Nobel Laureates present from several countries.

Prime Minister Trudeau and Yunus address One Young World Global Summit in Ottawa

Yunus Centre Press Release:

Prime Minister in discussion with Professor Yunus on youth issues before the opening of the One Young World Summit on 28 September at Parliament Hill.

Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus delivered a keynote address at the One Young World Summit in Ottawa on the evening of 28 September on the grounds of Parliament Hill. Professor Yunus speech followed that of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan at the grand opening of the Summit which brings together 1,300 young leaders from more than 196 countries.  Prime Minister Justin Trudeau earlier met with the Counselors of the One Young World Summit . He had a separate discussion with Prof Yunus on youth issues and later tweeted about his meeting with Prof Yunus stating  "Muhammad Yunus has dedicated his life to fighting poverty. @OneYoungWorld delegates are lucky to learn from him this week in Ottawa."

Professor Yunus urged the young delegates to not accept the world that is handed to them rather build the world of their own  dreams. He said he dreams of a world where there is Zero Poverty, Zero Unemployment and Zero Net Carbon Emissions.  He said that in order to achieve these three things that he saw three mega powers to achieve this - the power of youth, the power of technology and the power of social business. The young people should get to work now to create the world that they would like to live in and create a new civilization as this current greed based civilization would not last much longer.

Yunus meets Canada Finance Minister, addresses social business meetings in Ottawa and Toronto

Press Release

Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus with Canadian Finance Minister Bill Morneau who visited him at his hotel suite during his visit to Canada.

Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus had an hour long meeting with the Canadian Finance Minister Bill Morneau who visited him at his hotel on last Friday. They discussed about development strategies including the role of social business. Professor Yunus suggested that some part of development aid could be exclusively devoted to financing social business initiatives ie sustainable enterprises that address social needs while unleashing the creative energies of the communities. They talked in particular about Yunus Social Business initiatives in Haiti and Africa where funds have been created to support social businesses in those countries with very good results. They also discussed about developing entrepreneurship programs for aboriginal communities in Canada following the Nobin Udyokta program in Bangladesh to engage the unemployed youth in those communities to create entreprises that bring income for themselves while also generating employment for others. Mr Morneau thanked Prof Yunus for the meeting and also talked about prospects of big Canadian companies operating in poor countries to create social businesses to help overcome their problems.

Earlier in Ottawa Professor Yunus addressed the One Young World Summit audience of 1,300 young people on how they can change the world by challenging the conventional wisdoms that getting a good job is the purpose of life. He said human beings are entrepreneurs and by creating their own enterprises they discover themselves and create new centres of sharing the wealth, rather than working for companies  that merely make those who are rich richer. He talked about his own vision of a world with three zeroes - zero poverty zero unemployment and zero carbon emissions - and how the power of youth would be an important force for achieving those goals together with the power of social business and technology.

Professor Yunus was joined on stage by ten members of youth delegation from Bangladesh who were selected through a competitive process by Yunus Centre to attend the One Young World Summit in Ottawa as part of his delegation. They each told the audience what they hoped to do in future to make an impact in Bangladesh and the world.

In Toronto. Professor Yunus was a chief guest of the Toronto International Microfinance Summit (TIMS) and delivered a keynote address at a gathering of 150 participants made up of microfinance practitioners, business persons academic and others. He also addressed a meeting of Rotary in Toronto and shared about his work in social business in Bangladesh and around the world.

Photo Caption 1: Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus with Canadian Finance Minister Bill Morneau who visited him at his hotel during his visit to Canada.

Photo Caption 3: The ten young leaders selected by Yunus Centre on stage with Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus in front of 1300 delegates at the One Young World Summit in Ottawa, Canada


Yunus meets UN Secretary General at UN SDG Advocates’ Meeting at UN HQ

Yunus Centre Press Release (25 September, 2016)

Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus is seen among other SDG advocates who met Secretary General of UN, Ban Ki Moon on September 23, 2016. SDG advocates, seen with Professor Yunus, include Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg( sitting besides Ban Ki Moon),Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden; Thomas Gass, United Nations Assistant Secretary-General, Mr. Richard Curtis, Producer and Film Director, Alaa Murabit, Founder of The Voice of Libyan Women; Paul Polman, Chief Executive Officer of Unilever, Nobel Peace Laureate Ms. Leymah Gbowee, Ambassador Dho Young-Shim, Chairperson, United Nations World Tourism Organization’s Sustainable Tourism for Eliminating Poverty (ST-EP) Foundation, Professor Jeffrey Sachs, Director, Earth Institute at Columbia University, Mr. Forrest Whitaker, Founder and CEO, Whitaker Peace & Development Initiative among others.

Nobel Laureate Professor Yunus along with fellow Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) advocates held meeting with UN Secretary General at the chair for the last time before he steps out of UN, at UN head quarter on September 23, 2016.  Launched on 21 January 2016 on the occasion of the World Economic Forum in Davos, the SDG Advocates consist of 17 eminent persons assisting the UN Secretary-General in the campaign to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that world leaders unanimously adopted in September 2015.

With a mandate to support the Secretary-General in his efforts to generate momentum and commitment to achieve the SDGs by 2030, the SDG Advocates have been working to promote the universal sustainable development agenda, to raise awareness of the integrated nature of the SDGs, and to foster the engagement of new stakeholders in the implementation of these Goals.

SDG Advocates Group is co-chaired by Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg and  Ghana President John Dramani Mahama. Besides Professor Yunus other members of SDG are Queen Mathilde of Belgium; Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden; Jack Ma, Founder and Executive Chairman of the Chinese Alibaba Group of Internet-based businesses; and Leo Messi, the world renowned Argentine-born footballer,  who is also a UN Children’s Fund Goodwill Ambassador, Shakira, the famous singer, Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Co-Founder of the Qatar Foundation; Alaa Murabit, Founder of The Voice of Libyan Women; Paul Polman, Chief Executive Officer of Unilever.

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