UAE’s Sustainable Trade Forum engages the private-sector to deliver trade-led solutions at COP28

The Ministry of Economy, in partnership with global fintech company Capital.com and leading Vietnamese electric vehicle producer VinFast, has hosted the Sustainable Trade Forum at COP28 in Dubai’s Expo City. A key component of the first ever Trade Day at a Conference of the Parties, the forum brought together global business and investment leaders to offer private-sector perspectives on global trade and its role in shaping a more climate-friendly economy.

The Forum was opened by HE Dr Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, UAE Minister of State for Foreign Trade, who underlined the importance of trade to the global climate-change conversation and the role of the private sector in delivering the solutions capable of making a meaningful, long-term impact. The sessions included ‘Strengthening Sustainable Supply Chain Resilience: Navigating Global Disruption’ and ‘Fostering Green Entrepreneurship: Nurturing a Sustainability-led Startup Ecosystem, and featured expert insights from across the logistics, mobility, utilities and food sectors.

HE Al Zeyoudi said: “While policymakers and politicians can set the framework, it is the business owners, industrialists and entrepreneurs who will be needed to bring real, scalable solutions to market. By bridging the gap between policy-makers and private sector leaders, the Sustainability Trade Forum marks a critical step forward in delivering a trading system that is cleaner, smarter, faster – and one that ultimately moves us closer to the goals of the Paris Accords.”

His Excellency added that as the UAE builds toward the World Trade Organization’s 13th Ministerial Conference (MC13), which will take place in Abu Dhabi in February 2024, the Sustainable Trade Forum offered an important platform for building consensus on how to shape a modern global trading system that is open, inclusive and equitable, and provides nations with the means to deliver on their climate goals.

During the panel discussions, Le Thi Thu Thuy, Global CEO of Vinfast highlighted how electrified mobility can play a leading role in building sustainable supply chains. She said: “Of course, by replacing traditional combustion-engine vehicles, EVs reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but they also promote energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy sources. As we look to the future, the integration of EVs into global value chains offers a powerful strategy in our transition to a more sustainable and resilient economy.”

For his part, Kypros Zoumidou, Group CEO of Capital.com said: “Committing to a sustainability-led startup framework depends on the willingness of entrepreneurs to embark on projects early in their lifecycle. But acceleration and success will only be possible with the support of investors and robust ecosystems. As a disruptive technology company, we recognise how smart partnerships between government and business can really drive progress.”

In addition to Vinfast and Capital.com CEOs, the Forum was addressed by representatives of the Scottish Government; NYU Abu Dhabi; Ducab Group; Uber; Al Dahra Group; IBM Consulting; ADNOC; General Electric; Princeville Capital; Orbillion Bio, Inc.; Wamda Group; and Change Foods.

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