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  • Writer's pictureCasandra Lidel

The Roadmap to Cop 28 and Sustainable Investments in the UAE

The 28th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 28) 2023 will be held in the United Arab Emirates, more specifically, Dubai from Nov. 30 through Dec. 12 at Dubai Expo City.

The UAE is looking to showcase their vision as one of the world’s most proactive nations on climate action. It was first in the region to set a 2050 net zero goal and at Cop27, it became the first to announce absolute emission cuts.

"We will put all our capabilities to make the conference a success. The UAE will remain committed to global climate action to protect the planet," said H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum Vice President and Ruler of Dubai, who also serves as prime minister of the UAE.

“The UAE is known as a responsible supplier of energy and will continue to play this role as long as the world needs oil and gas,” President Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan told the leaders’ summit at Cop27.

The UAE says it has the world’s sixth largest crude oil reserves and seventh largest gas reserves but in spite of this fact, has made efforts to diversify the economy away from oil, earlier than most of its neighbours.

Tourism is a key growth sector. Dubai is becoming a business and financial services hub but more than half of government revenues still depend on the oil and gas industry.

UAE appointed Sultan al-Jaber as COP28 president-designate who declared in a statement that “The UAE is approaching COP28 with a strong sense of responsibility and the highest possible level of ambition.”

The UAE described Cop28 as a moment to find “realistic, practical, and pragmatic solutions to accelerate the global energy transition”.

In 2021, the UAE became the first Gulf state to set a 2050 net zero goal and in 2022 was among the few countries that supported the call to step up their 2030 climate plans.

Green Economy & Investments

The summit will hold the first formal assessment of progress since the Paris Agreement came into force and the outcome could be critical in spurring much-needed emission cuts this decade.

Adaptation and agriculture are poised to be key priorities for the host, which imports 85% of the food it consumes.

Under a partnership with the US, the UAE pledged to invest $1bn in high-tech “climate-smart” agriculture.

GCC nations might gain a lot if green financing systems develop correctly going forward. By 2030, there will be $2trn in economic growth and more than a million new jobs, predicts Strategy&, an affiliate of PwC. Additionally, green funding may speed up the region’s plans for economic diversification and employment creation.

Results of a recent survey undertaken by UNEP FI and the UAE Ministry of Environment and Water, there is clear evidence not only that many of the UAE’s financial institutions are already investing in green products, but that that investment is on the rise.

With Cop28 coming at the end of the year in Dubai global attention will be focused on the UAE, its leaders, and its companies, therefore sustainable & green opportunities will be the focus for many investors.

We will expect companies within the space or the ones with a strong environmental story to receive a great deal of attention and attract investment from investors or funds that have a net-zero agenda of their own.

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