Mohamed Omran, Chairperson of Egypt’s Financial Regulatory Authority (FRA), has issued a decision to establish the Regional Centre for Sustainable Finance.
The centre, the first of its kind for sustainable finance in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region, is a step towards strengthening the Egyptian economy’s presence on the global green economy map.
It follows the global green bond markets surpassing the $1trn mark since the introduction of such financial vessels in 2007.
Omran said the centre will complete the institutional and organisational structure of the FRA’s Financial Services Institute. It represents an important addition to the “Knowledge Hub” that the FRA is currently establishing.
He added that an advisory board has been formed for the regional centre, which includes: El Sayed Turki, a sustainability expert and senior advisor to the Federation of Egyptian Industries (FEI); James Zan, Head of the Investment and Projects Division of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD); and Hussein Abaza, a sustainability expert and advisor to both Minister of Planning and Economic Development, and Minister of Environment, in Egypt.
The board also includes: Dalia Abdel Kader, Head of the Sustainable Finance Sector at the Commercial International Bank (CIB); Robert Battalano, Acting Head of the Financial Markets Division of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD); Sonia Gibbs, Executive Director and Head of Sustainable Finance in the Global Policy of the Institute of International Finance (IIF); Aisha Mahmoud, Special Adviser to the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria for Sustainable Banking Services; Obaid Al Zaabi, Chief Executive Officer of the UAE’s Securities and Commodities Authority; Mark Haley, Senior Advisor to the International Network of Financial Centers from For Sustainability (FC4S); Mahmoud Mohieldin, Executive Director at the International Monetary Fund (IMF); and Nada El Ajizy, Minister Plenipotentiary and Director of the Sustainable Development and International Cooperation Department at the Arab League.
Sina Habous, Advisor to the President of the Authority for Sustainable Development, has been appointed as the new centre’s Executive Director.
The members of the centre’s advisory board elected Mahmoud Mohieldin as Chairperson of the advisory board for its first session, which will last for three years.
Mohieldin said that investing in green finance has become an imperative for global investment and financial institutions of various sizes and activities.
He also said that global investment flows within the green economy basically require the presence of those types of centres that play the role of a compass in directing investments.
In the same context, Hisham Ramadan, Assistant to Chairperson and Executive Director of the Financial Services Institute, said that the Regional Centre for Sustainable Finance will spread awareness of sustainable financing.
It also aims to promote the culture of green economy within the non-banking financial sectors (NBFS), and promote environmental conservation practices.
Habbous said that the new centre will bear the responsibility of building the capacity of private sector companies in the non-banking financial sector, whilst enabling green financing.
The centre will also build up the principles of sustainable financing and sustainable insurance, and support the introduction of green financial products in all non-banking financial sectors. This is with the aim of encouraging the reorientation of private capital flows necessary to bridge the investment gaps in the region in the field of green finance, sustainable insurance, and responsible investment.