The Qatar Financial Centre (QFC) has developed a sustainable sukuk and bonds framework, the first in the GCC or Gulf Cooperation Council region, which would further develop the local debt market in the country.
The framework is based on the latest International Capital Markets Association (ICMA)’s Green Bond Principles (GBP), Social Bond Principles (SBP), and Sustainable Bond Guidelines (SBG).
The QFC’s sustainable sukuk and bonds framework integrates local requirements and features with ICMA’s globally accepted principles to create a harmonised financial market ecosystem locally, based on international standards.
It will promote appropriate disclosures, the flow of relevant information, reporting, and transparency and ensure that these instruments meet their objectives and minimise risks of greenwashing.
“In keeping with the country’s efforts towards the fulfilment of Qatar’s National Vision 2030 and the Qatar Central Bank’s strategic goal of Developing Financial Markets and Fostering Financial Innovation’, this framework offers best in class practices and is a step in the right direction; thereby creating a sustainable economy through streamlined labelled capital market instruments," said QFC Authority chief executive Yousuf Mohamed al-Jaida.
The aim of this framework is to encourage the further development of the local debt capital market by diversifying options for borrowers and investors and by laying a strong foundation for building trust between these stakeholders, he said.
The launch of this framework showcases QFC’s commitment to environmental, social, and governance (ESG) while emphasising the growing significance of Islamic finance in sustainable development.
Abdul-Hakeem Mostafawi, chief executive of HSBC Qatar, said it is committed to helping lead the transition to a global net zero economy.
"Our collaboration with QFC on this initiative supports the development of the financial services sector in Qatar and the country’s transition to a carbon net-zero future starting with a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 25% by 2030,” he added.
Henk Jan Hoogendoorn, chief of Financial Sector Office, QFC, said access to a unified framework highlights the requirements of an impactful issuance.
"This development will boost transparency and accountability in Qatar’s financial market and promote sound environmental and social practices. The establishment of this structure will introduce issuers to a new investor base and allow investors to diversify their source of funding and embed their sustainability targets with their financing options,” he said.
Highlighting that investors are increasingly focused on ESG issues; Osama Ali, Managing Director and Head of Global Banking HSBC Qatar, said this framework will highlight the positive developments for a sustainable future based on sound ESG principles in Qatar.
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