The financing and investing in green economy projects was the focus of the sixth Green Economy Annual Conference, which was held today (May 25) in Dubai.

The conference, under the title ‘National Roundtable on Financing and Investing in Green Economy Projects,’ was held under the patronage of Dr Rashid Ahmed Bin Fahad, UAE Minister of Environment and Water, in co-operation with the United Nations Environment Program Finance Initiative (UNEP FI).

The forum saw broad international, regional, and national participation and was attended by senior officials from various government organisations and private sector companies representing banking and finance, insurance, investment, and industry.

Key personalities from the Chambers of Commerce and Industry, the Departments of Economic Development, the Ministries of Economy, Finance, Energy and Foreign Affairs, Municipalities, and Environmental Authorities were also present in addition to representatives from international organisations such as the UNO.

Dr Bin Fahad, in his opening speech, said that the conference forms part of the UAE’s preparations for hosting the ‘14th Global Roundtable on Green Economy and Sustainable Development’ in 2016.

To be held under the patronage of Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Executive Council for Dubai Government, next year’s conference will focus on the theme ‘Islamic Finance.’

Since the UAE has adopted a strategic approach for sustainable development in line with the UAE’s Strategy for Green Development, the focus was on a mechanism for implementing the strategy based on comprehensive analytical studies for various development sectors, said Dr Bin Fahad.

It should also study the economic effects of the shift in comparison with selected countries with the involvement of all stakeholders from the public and private sectors and the academic community, he said.

He further pointed out that the effort has resulted in the implementation of a Green Growth strategy in the UAE, representing the country’s ‘Green Agenda for the next 15 years and the launch of the first national report of the UAE’s Green Economy.

In addition, it will continue to work on the implementation of the ‘Dubai Tools for the Green Economy’ project and the ‘Emirates International Center for Excellence in Green Economy.’

An agreement has been made with the United Nations Environment Program to implement them during the 1st Global Conference Partnership for Action in Green Economy (PAGE 2014).

“Hosting the Green Economy Annual Conference today and the experts in these fields comes as part of our commitment to provide adequate knowledge and opportunities on finance and investment in green economy projects, both locally and internationally,” Dr Bin Fahad said.

“Moreover, there is a need to define the financial mechanism of the United Nations Environment Program, its different areas of work, and the services it offers. We hope that this conference will be a motivational tool to guide and encourage participants to take care of the green funding issues and come up with sustainable financial initiatives in the country,” he said.

The conference featured five Dialogue Sessions, including Sustainable Financing, State of the UAE’s Green Economy, Financing Low Carbon Emission Opportunities, and Leadership in Financing Greening of Industries, in accordance with the process of transitioning to a green economy.

The first session reviewed the financial sector’s ability to cope with the move towards a green economy while the second analysed global trends in sustainable financing such as the terms, tools, principles, and best practices adopted by the financial sector and regional leaders. The importance of the sustainability of the financial sector and its effect towards lowering risk was also discussed.

During the third session, the state of the UAE’s green economy was discussed along with efforts that have being undertaken to transform it to a green economy as a means to sustainable development.

Meanwhile, the participants in the fourth and fifth sessions reviewed the opportunities in financing low carbon emission projects, especially in the renewable energy and energy efficiency fields.

Moreover, participants exchanged experiences and expertise on the financing of carbon-based sectors such as petrochemicals and energy-intensive aluminium and cement industries.

Source: Trade Arabia