IFC Supports Development of First Environment, Social and Governance Index in MENA
IFC Supports Development of First Environment, Social and Governance Index in MENA
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Index to be Jointly Developed with Hawkamah, S&P and CRISIL IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is helping develop an index that will encourage responsible and sustainable investment practices in the Middle East and North Africa by measuring the environmental, social, and corporate governance performance of hundreds of listed companies in the region. IFC is supporting efforts of the Hawkamah Institute for Corporate Governance, indices and ratings provider Standard & Poor’s, and Credit Rating and Information Services of India Ltd. (CRISIL) to develop the Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) index, the first of its kind to be launched in the region. The index will help some 600 listed companies in 11 countries better understand environmentally and socially responsible investment practices, and the importance of implementing sound corporate governance. Businesses that seek balanced, long-term performance will be encouraged to adopt sustainable business practices. Dr. Nasser Saidi, Executive Director of Hawkamah, said: “In response to economic disruption and to bad practices blamed for sparking the financial crisis, institutional investors are increasingly focusing on long-term risks in their investments. Environmental, social, and governance factors are playing a growing role in investment decisions in our region. Financial performance indicators have traditionally marked whether to invest in a company. With IFC’s support we aim to provide the market and investors with a tool focusing on non-financial indicators, which  are fundamental in assessing the sustainability of a company’s future performance.” IFC’s Associate Director, Gulrez Hoda, said, “The absence of credible and standardized data about business practices relating to social and environmental concerns is a key barrier limiting the flow of socially responsible investing funds to emerging markets. Better social, environmental, and governance practices will ease the flow of funds into ethically responsible products.” The index will cover the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait, Jordan, Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, and Tunisia and provide qualitative information for investors’ sustainability needs, absorb high liquidity growth, and reduce volatility of stock markets. The project will strengthen and promote environmentally-sustainable, and socially- responsible businesses.  In turn, this will create greater awareness and adoption of ESG practices by companies as well as increase available financing options. This ESG index is part of IFC’s partnership with Hawkamah to promote better corporate governance in the Middle East and North Africa. IFC and Hawkamah have been working on advancing corporate governance in the region to help build capital markets and attract capital and foreign direct investment.

Testimonials

  • "The DDP provides a solid foundation of corporate governance for existing and aspiring directors."

    David Haglund - Senior Executive Director and Portfolio Manager of the Templeton Frontier and MENA Market strategies

  • “Thank you so much for sharing such insightful webinar. It was great and valuable to all participate”

    Shady Rashed - Senior Economic Researcher at The Ministry of International Cooperation of Egypt

  • “Good session and very well organized on the webinar about How to buffer and lessen the impact of the novel Covid – 19, to maintain business sustainability with Hawkamah - AUB / Makhzoumi” 

    Bilal Hamade - Executive Advisor

  • "One of the best webinars I attended. Well done OSB Makhzoumi and Hawkamah”

    Fida Kanaan – Director – Executive education  OSB AUB

  • "A journey full of knowledge, experience and professionalism . I have learned a lot and definitely enjoyed the time I spent with my colleagues."

    Ibtihal Al-Shamali- Director of Corporate Governance- Capital Market Authority of Kuwait

  • The breakfast meetings organised by Hawkamah provide attendees with a great opportunity to meet with peers from leading organisations and exchange ideas on current issues and challenges. A strong panel of industry experts discussing the challenges from different perspectives on ‘How to get the board more engaged’ was most insightful and engaging with enthusiastic audience participation especially in matters regarding diversity and quality of information that is  presented to the board for effective decision making. I look forward to more such events that are organised by Hawkamah

    Sunil Edwards- Group Head of Internal Audit  - Bank of Sharjah

  • The power breakfast on board engagement organized by Hawkamah in collaboration with Diligent was a successful event, very insightful and informative and well organized

    Mostafa Ibrahim Abdeltawab - Tax Agent & Consultant  - Skylines Tax Consultancy

  • There is absolutely no doubt that Hawkamah – as always – has done unmatchable effort in producing its most recent valuable report in association with Diligent about Board Best Practices in the MENA. The discussions that took place in the “Power Breakfast” was so important and insightful; the influx of questions by the quality participants and the valuable answers of the quality panelists is a clear proof of Hawkamah continued success in such events. 

    Yasser Al Dabach – Board Secretary – Ghobash Trading & Investment Group

  • The technical knowledge, insights, case studies and learning provided by the ‘Director Development Program’ are very useful and effective in framing the strategic planning, implementation and delivery phases of growth plans in the difficult economic and geo-political times that we are operating in.

    Hisham Dimashki – CEO - BAP LLC – (associated with GM Trading Companies - Washington DC)

  • The certified Board Secretaries Workshop provided by Hawkamah and Dubai Financial Market is an essential course for learning corporate governance, scope and responsibilities of the board secretary and understanding the governance and disclosure requirements of the Dubai Financial Market and the Securities and Commodities Authority. It is a practical course which combined recent best practices and key learning lessons. I would highly recommend it for people involved in corporate governance and in particular in a listed company.

    Omran Al Zamani - Senior Legal Counsel - Dana Gas PJSC

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