The Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB), in collaboration with the Ministry of Social Development, recently organized a panel discussion involving key stakeholders in the financial sector and listed companies. The session underscored the critical importance of implementing national plans and programs geared towards achieving carbon neutrality by 2060, in alignment with the targeted Financial Services Sector Development Strategy (2022-2026) and the 2030 Bahrain Economic Vision.
CBB Governor Rasheed Mohammed Al Maraj expressed his satisfaction at collaborating with the Ministry of Sustainable Development for this discussion session. The event brought together chief executives of listed companies, insurance firms, banks, and investment companies.
This roundtable discussion forms part of a series aimed at engaging the financial sector in finding solutions that adhere to environmental, social, and governance (ESG) standards. It represents one of CBB’s initiatives to bolster the sector’s resilience and enhance its ability to provide financing aligned with green requirements, following international best practices.
Addressing the session, Sustainable Development Minister Noor bint Ali Al Khulaif emphasized the importance of addressing social, environmental, and other challenges to support sustainable development. She highlighted the need to stimulate innovation within the financial sector, particularly in designing instruments that contribute to its continued leadership role in the region. The minister also commended the financial sector’s pivotal role in the economic recovery plan.
Furthermore, the minister revealed that the roundtable discussion was part of Bahrain’s preparations for participation in the summit on sustainable development goals, scheduled to take place at the United Nations in New York in September, coinciding with the UN General Assembly meetings.
Dr. Mahmoud Mohieldin, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Executive Director for the Arab Group and the Maldives, who also serves as the UN Special Envoy for Financing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, highlighted international best practices and trends concerning environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) standards. In his presentation, he emphasized that climate action and transformation require fair and suitable financing, the implementation of technological solutions, and a shift in ideas and policies across all stakeholders.
Prominent executives including Bank ABC Group Chief Executive Ael Al Waary, Alba CEO Ali Albaqali, and BEYON Chief Communication and Sustainability Officer Shaikh Bader bin Rashid Al Khalifa also actively participated in the roundtable sessions.
The Central Bank of Bahrain’s initiative showcases a commitment to fostering sustainable finance and advancing Bahrain’s role in addressing pressing global challenges related to climate change and sustainable development.