Qatar’s GORD, Dukhan Bank unite to promote sustainable building practices

By Arya M Nair, Official Reporter
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GORD_Dukhan Bank Sustainable Building Practice
Sheikh Mohammed Bin Abdulaziz Al Thani & Dr. Yousef Alhorr at MoU signing ceremony

Qatar-based Gulf Organization for Research and Development (GORD) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the region’s Dukhan Bank at the 27th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP27) to the UNFCCC taking place from 6 to 18 November 2022 in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt.

The signing of the agreement on behalf of Dukhan Bank was Sheikh Mohammed Bin Abdulaziz Al Thani, AGM, Head of Government & Environmental Social Governance (ESG), who was joined by GORD’s Founding Chairman Dr. Yousef Alhorr.

The collaboration is to promote sustainable building practices through the implementation of the Global Sustainability Assessment System (GSAS). For the first time in Qatar, Dukhan Bank with support from GORD is launching an exclusive Shariah-compliant Green and Sustainable Real Estate Finance program for all Dukhan Bank customers engaged in commercial, residential, and other real estate development projects.

As part of the partnership, Dukhan Bank will provide green finance promotions to project owners and developers working on real estate projects seeking green building certifications under the GSAS framework. Eligible applicants who will benefit from the Green and Sustainable Real Estate Finance Program include all Dukhan Bank customers in Qatar targeting at least 3 Stars rating under the GSAS Design & Build and Class B in Construction Management certifications.

Sheikh Mohammed Bin Abdulaziz Al-Thani, AGM – Head of Government & Environmental Social Governance, Dukhan Bank, said that “We are pleased to sign MoU with the Gulf Organization for Research and Development, which comes in line with Dukhan Bank’s ESG strategy, to guarantee sustainable management of its banking operations, and enhance its capacity to lead banking institutions supporting transformation into a sustainable community, and actively strive for advancing Dukhan Bank’s sustainability rates to go in line with the pillars of Qatar National Vision 2030 and the UN’s SDGs.”

With an aim to create sustainable cities and communities, the green finance program directly targets SDG 11 while leveraging its interconnectedness with the other Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In line with Qatar National Climate Change Action Plan, the green finance program will contribute towards a sustainable environment by ‘balancing economic growth and climate protection in addition to reducing the environmental footprint of buildings and construction.

GSAS is MENA’s first performance-based green building system aimed at improving the design, construction, and operations of buildings while also identifying sustainability challenges specific to the regional built environment.

Apart from facilitating climate-conscious real estate projects through green building certification, the Green and Sustainable Real Estate Finance Program will also assist clients in reporting non-financial impacts that include aspects related to the environment, society, and governance.

Related: IRENA & General Electric collaborate on climate change goals at COP27