Dubai, UAE: The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) announced it will waive all regulatory fees for issuers wishing to list sustainability-related debt securities in the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) throughout 2024. This fee waiver is effective immediately and will apply throughout 2024.

This decision, announced today at COP28 by Ian Johnston, Chief Executive of the DFSA, underscores the DFSA’s long-standing commitment to accelerating the growth of sustainable capital markets in the DIFC since the publication of its first set of Guidelines on best practices for listing green bonds and sukuk in 2018.

Nasdaq Dubai, the DIFC’s exchange, has since emerged as the world’s largest ESG sukuk market with more than 60% of US-denominated ESG sukuk and close to 50% of all-currencies ESG sukuk.

To further mobilise and bolster the sources of financing for sustainable projects in the UAE and the wider region, the fee waiver applies to all ESG-related bonds and sukuk labelled as green, social, sustainable, sustainability-linked, climate, climate adaptation, climate transition, or similar.

Ian Johnston said: “The DFSA is proud to continue to play a crucial role in building a hub for sustainable finance in the UAE. As we approach the conclusion of the ‘Year of Sustainability’, declared by the UAE President His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and with the UAE’s Presidency of COP28, the DFSA reaffirms its continued commitment to encouraging companies to transition towards issuing green and sustainability bonds and sukuk for financing environmentally and climatically sustainable projects.”

“We are confident that, alongside our streamlined regulatory process, the fee waiver will catalyse the acceleration of sustainable debt issuances from the DIFC,” he adds.

This fee waiver applies to all new and repeat issuers who make a relevant application to the DFSA. It is effective immediately, covering applications received until 31 December 2024.

For more information on the DFSA’s streamlined approach to debt capital markets, click here.

To find out more about the DFSA’s approach to sustainable finance, please contact the DFSA Markets team at

For further information, please contact:
Corporate Communications
Dubai Financial Services Authority
Level 13, The Gate, West Wing
Dubai, UAE


The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) is the independent regulator of financial services conducted in and from the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), a purpose built financial free zone in Dubai. The DFSA's regulatory mandate covers asset management, banking and credit services, securities, collective investment funds, custody and trust services, commodities futures trading, Islamic finance, insurance, crowdfunding platforms, money services, an international equities exchange and an international commodities derivatives exchange. In addition to regulating financial and ancillary services, the DFSA is responsible for administering Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Combating the Financing of Terrorism (CFT) legislation that applies to regulated firms and Designated Non-Financial Businesses and Professions in the DIFC. Please refer to the DFSA's website for more information.

Ian Johnston was appointed Chief Executive of the DFSA in September 2022. He previously served as the DFSA’s Chief Executive from 2012-2018. A lawyer by background, Ian had several senior executive roles in the private sector, including as CEO of one of Australia’s major trustee companies. The second half of his career being in regulation, Ian was an Executive Director at the Australian Securities and Investments Commission; Special Advisor at the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission; and since 2019, consulting to and advising a number of financial regulators in Europe, Asia and the Middle East.