Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates: UAE Banks Federation (UBF), the sole representative and unified voice of banks in the UAE, reaffirmed its commitment to support UAE’s goals by pledging to mobilise over AED 1 trillion, which represents more than US$ 270 billion, in sustainable finance by the year 2030. His Excellency Abdulaziz Al-Ghurair, Chairman of UAE Banks Federation, announced the pledge at an event organised jointly by Central Bank of the UAE with the COP28 Presidency to support and facilitate global climate finance solutions and progress towards a sustainable future.

Commenting on the development, Mr. Jamal Saleh, Director General of UAE Banks Federation, said, “The pledge made today by our UBF Chairman, H.E. Abdulaziz Al-Ghurair, to mobilise over AED 1 trillion in sustainable finance, represents the collective efforts of our leading national member banks and is a true testament to our financial sector’s commitment to and support of building a better future. UAE Banks Federation, being the active representative of UAE banks, has been working closely with its partners on sustainability efforts to accelerate and advance sustainable development goals. Six of our UBF member banks have already taken significant strides in this regard, with over AED 190 billion (USD 52 billion) having been already targeted towards green projects, renewable energy, waste-to-energy, and green technologies. In addition, UBF is working closely on strengthening the principles and frameworks of green finance under the direct supervision of our Central Bank of the UAE, which has adopted the principles of sustainability in the banking and financial sector and is considered a model for applying these frameworks in operations.”

The Director General added that UBF has played the central role in this initiative with its high-level ESG committee, which comprises specialist experts from UBF member banks. This committee works diligently to reinforce the principles and frameworks of green finance, aligning that with UAE’s commitment to sustainability in the banking and financial sector.

“The UAE has adopted sustainability standards and principles in the banking and financial sector, with Abu Dhabi and Dubai’s Declarations for Sustainable Finance in years 2016 and 2019, as well as the Guiding Principles for Sustainable Finance to promote the development of a green financial market in year 2020, and the National Framework for Sustainable Finance in year 2021.”

“We are confident that our UAE banking sector can make significant contributions to the UAE’s National Climate Change Plan. UBF’s significance lies not only in its commitment to supporting sustainability, but also in its role as the platform for cooperation among all its UBF member banks. The Federation seeks to accelerate progress in this domain by fostering a business environment that encourages competitive, active, and sustainable finance,” he said

He added, “Under the direct supervision of Central Bank of the UAE, our banking sector continues to consolidate its position as a regional and global leader, which places a great responsibility on us to maintain such position and to build on such solid base to achieve higher goals and targets.”

UBF Director General affirmed, “In addition to financial commitments, UBF recognises the pivotal role of digitalisation and advanced technologies in driving global climate action.  UBF, through its involvement in several initiatives, including this COP28 UAE Banks Pledge, actively promotes innovative technology solutions in sustainable finance to achieve sustainable development goals.”

About UAE Banks Federation (UBF):

Established in 1982, UAE Banks Federation (UBF) is the sole representative body comprising 59 members of banks and organisations operating in the UAE. UBF advocates the interests of all its members and enhances cooperation and coordination between them in order to elevate the UAE's banking ecosystem for the benefit of members, customers, and the overall UAE economy.

UBF's mission and objectives are focused on representing its members and defending their rights and interest. UBF provides a platform for cooperation and the exchange of ideas and expertise among its members and plays a significant role in raising public awareness about the contributions of the UAE banking sector to the economic and social development of the country.

UBF has a 22-member Advisory Council consisting of CEOs and General Managers from member banks and financial institutions, which oversees the implementation of UBF's policies and activities. The CEOs Council also makes directional decisions through UBF's General Secretariat for UBF's 26 technical and 3 advisory committees, which in turn are tasked to discuss all issues relevant to the UAE banking and financial services ecosystem. UAE Banks Federation also includes a CEOs Consultative Council, which consists of chief executives of other member banks.

For further information, please contact:
Sooyin Lee
UAE Banks Federation