UAE private sector scales up efforts to support circular economy agenda

Report explains how the strategy is implemented across four main sectors

Mariam AlMheiri, Minister of Climate Change and Environment, said the UAE is committed to promoting the circular economy and identifying solutions that contribute to sustainable growth. Victor Besa / The National
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The private sector in the UAE has intensified its efforts in support of the nation's circular economy agenda, the programme's governing body has said.

A variety of projects and initiatives, which include circular design, eco-friendly manufacturing practices and waste management innovations, have been undertaken across a number of sectors, the UAE Circular Economy Council said, state news agency Wam reported.

The council, in its review of UAE Circular Economy Landscape Report 2023, also highlighted the acceleration of the strategy's implementation across the four key sectors it is focusing on – manufacturing, food, infrastructure and transport.

The review was held in a meeting chaired by Mariam Al Mheiri, Minister of Climate Change and the Environment, and attended by Abdulla bin Touq, Minister of Economy, and other council members.

The meeting discussed main developments pertinent to authorities, including the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment, the Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology, the Ministry of Economy, and the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure.

In addition, the proposed Emirates Circular Economy Laboratory was reviewed, as well as a recommendation to host the Circular Economy Forum during the Cop28 climate change conference next month.

“The UAE is committed to promoting the circular economy and identifying solutions that contribute to sustainable growth through the co-operation of all key stakeholders including the private sector," Ms Al Mheiri said.

The council also said it was planning to share "these experiences" with the global community at Cop28, which is scheduled to be held in Dubai from November 30 to December 12.

"The council underpins the continued collaboration of all partners in strengthening the framework of the national circular economy. This is part of the UAE’s comprehensive approach to achieving net zero by 2050," she said.

A circular economy is a system that focuses on reducing the extraction of natural resources, minimising waste and regenerating natural systems. Raw materials, components and products keep their value for as long as possible, while renewable energy sources are used to fuel economic activity.

Adopting such principles could deliver $26 trillion in economic benefits by 2030, the Global Commission on Economy and Climate had said.

The UAE will focus on developing a circular economy as it aims to double its economic growth by 2031, Mr bin Touq said in May.

Last year, the UAE approved 22 policies aimed at accelerating the country's transition to a circular economy, as part of its push towards sustainable economic development.

“Creating an environment that actively encourages circularity at every point in the value chain is integral to the responsible use of our resources," said Ahmed Ismail, chief executive of Majid Al Futtaim Holding.

"The measure of our collective success hinges on our ability to bring sectors and society together, united by legislation and the regulatory frameworks that serve as the foundation for the creative ecosystem in which a circular economy may thrive.”

Updated: October 07, 2023, 9:35 AM