Tharawat Family Business Forum Launches Climate Action Report
On December 15, the Tharawat Family Business Forum launched a first-of-its-kind report to address the realities of climate change and environmental sustainability in the MENA and explore the role family-owned companies will play in building a more sustainable future.
The report “Climate Change and Family Business: Action for a Sustainable Future in the MENA” was developed with the support of the AW Rostamani Group, knowledge partner the Global Compact Network UAE, and 12 contributing experts and business leaders.
The report is a unique publication that explores urgent questions, such as ‘Are businesses in the MENA aware of and taking action against climate change?’.
It also highlights the latest climate developments globally and regionally, outlines the role that family firms play in mitigating climate risks and explores ways to implement mechanisms that will drive corporate sustainability.
At the heart of this report are the three in-depth case studies on L’Oréal, the Chalhoub Group and the Arrigoni Group, granting a deeper understanding of how these notable organizations have envisioned and implemented their environmental strategies.
In addition, over 20 MENA family businesses taking decisive climate action are highlighted as champions of change throughout the report as well as a climate action checklist to support enterprises in implementing environmental strategies and explore opportunities.
An editor’s committee with members from five different MENA countries was established to provide oversight and guide the further development of the report.
The report was launched during a virtual session featuring experts and family business leaders, such as Prof Alfredo De Massis, IMD Business School and LUMS, Italy; Dr Basma Al Zamil, GM, Group HR, Zamil Group – KSA; Imad Al Fadel, MD, ESG Integrate – UAE; and Samar Ibrahim, associate director, EY Parthenon, MENA.
Following the launch, the partners will host further opportunities to address core matters around climate action and climate risk throughout 2023 and leading up to COP 28 that is slated to be held in the UAE in 2023.
Farida El Agamy, GM, Tharawat Family Business Forum, said: “The science is undeniable; climate change is transforming our natural habitats, ecosystems, and the Earth’s biodiversity, directly affecting our lives, businesses, and economies.
"In light of this global environmental crisis, family enterprises must pivot to deal with the changing world around them.
"While this is a sobering prospect, it is not one without opportunities. This report explores the way forward for family-owned companies and outlines a clear path toward a more sustainable future.”
Dr Amina Al Rostamani, Board Member of AW Rostamani Group, said: “In 2016, the MENA region was declared one of the world’s most vulnerable to rising sea levels. At the same time, though the MENA region is home to 6.3% of the global population, only 1.4% have access to renewable freshwater.
"Saving water and energy and eliminating single-use plastic while recycling and reducing electronic waste are just some of the environmental initiatives being employed at the AW Rostamani Group to confront such issues.
"With resources to help support family businesses identify environmental solutions to benefit them, their employees, their communities and the planet, this report represents a critical piece of the climate change puzzle.”
Eng Waleed Salman, Chairman, Global Compact Network UAE said: “Ahead of Net-Zero Initiatives launched in several countries regionally and in the lead up to COP 28, climate ambition is key to engaging with the private sector to support the climate agenda regionally and globally.
"It represents the fantastic opportunity for our participating organizations to become regional and international leaders at the forefront of the climate movement. I invite all organizations, regardless of their level of engagement with climate action, to take steps towards decarbonization."