WBO knows – Sustainable … resilient

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KUWAIT CITY, MARCH 16: The World Bank Kuwait Office in partnership with British Embassy and CEFAS hosted a virtual seminar on Economic Diversification for a Sustainable and Resilient Kuwait, with distinguished panelists representing GS-SCPD, KFAS, KAPP and moderated by KISR.

Kuwait has sustained one of the world’s highest rates of economic growth due to abundance of natural resources, particularly oil and gas reserves, which it has converted into some level of diversified trade and investments.In recognition of the environmental risks that such rapid growth could pose, the Government of Kuwait (GoK) has undertaken a number of important steps notably the Kuwait National Development Plan (NDP), passing of new environment protection law in 2014 and many more initiatives.

Kuwait has made strides in integrating environment into the broader development agenda in its future vision for the country as part of Vision 2035/New Kuwait. Kuwait nonetheless faces a number of key macroeconomic challenges of diversification and there is increasing pressure for it to be initiate green, resilient, and sustainable growth in the medium- and long-term.

The event was opened by Ghassan Alkhoja, Resident Representative of the World Bank Country Office in Kuwait, and welcomed over 100 participants in the event, which was well attended by government officials, private sector, international companies, academia, and the diplomatic community. Issam Abousleiman, World Bank Regional Director for the GCC, expressed the challenge for Kuwait is how to maintain its economic development achievements in a world expected to decarbonize within the next 50 years or so and, in the short to medium term, how best to manage its mineral resources assets. He indicated that Kuwait’s economy is extremely vulnerable to global economic shocks and the trend of energy transition. Decarbonization policies around the world will impact Kuwait’s future economic and environmental policy trajectory. Compounded by the global Covid-19 struggles, there is global outcry leading to as John Kerry’s U.S. Presidential Special Envoy for Climate Change expressive quote “tipping points” of change.”

Globally now, there is ambition on mitigation, ambition on climate finance and ambition on adaptation. In the context of Covid-19, there is now an opportunity to reboot global economies, as indicated by Mr. Neil Carlin, head of the Political Section at the British Embassy in Kuwait. In the context of Kuwait economy, Dr. Khaled Mahdi, Secretary-General for the General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning and Development, elaborated that efforts should focus on efficient and sustainable water provision and management, energy management and effective emissions reduction through green technologies.

He added that New Kuwait and the third Kuwait National Development Plan seek to have a sustainable and healthy living environment as key pillars for Kuwait’s development in the future, thus inherently considering climate change into Kuwait’s development strategy.

This news has been read 12276 times!

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