How Green Investments are Critical to the Middle East’s Long-Term Economic Growth
The drive for sustainable growth has become more pronounced than ever before. Many countries are making moves to transition their economies towards cleaner energy. Companies have also joined the bandwagon, with many promising to eliminate their carbon emissions in the coming years. The Middle East is not left out.
Middle Eastern countries like Saudi Arabia and Bahrain have significantly increased their green energy investments and use of green finance. This article will discuss how green investments are vital to long-term economic growth in the Middle East.
What are Green Investments?
Green investments are investments targeted at projects that conserve natural resources and are environmentally friendly. Thus, investments like renewable energy projects are termed green investments.
Green Investment and Economic Growth in the Middle East
The Middle East is one of the most affected regions by climate change. For example, climate change has triggered a wave of droughts and severe desertification in the region. The World Bank also recently projected that the Middle East would experience constant water scarcity due to the effects of climate change. Without appropriate policy responses, this problem might worsen in the coming years.
These climate change effects are even more disturbing as they could threaten the economic viability of many Middle Eastern countries. Green investments are the most effective option for Middle Eastern governments to reduce these climate change effects and boost their economic position. Investing in green projects and renewable energy integration is bound to help Middle Eastern countries reduce their carbon emissions. For example, the UAE recently announced its plans to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050 by leveraging green investments totalling $163 billion. Saudi Arabia has also announced the construction of a zero-carbon city worth over $500 billion.
Apart from environmental impacts, green investments can also help diversify the economies of many Middle Eastern countries. More countries are moving towards renewable energy and cutting their oil usage in today’s commercial space. Thus, the oil demand will reduce in the coming years. Most Middle Eastern economies are oil-dependent. Thus, this situation may hinder long-term economic growth. Green investments can help reduce the oil dependence of Middle Eastern countries and free up the economy for more lucrative sectors.
Lastly, green investments could help reduce the costs of Middle Eastern countries. For instance, Bahrain is set to save about 230 million Bahraini Dinars ($610 million) by investing in renewable energy. The cost-saving capabilities of green investments can help drive long-term economic growth in the Middle East, as countries can spend the saved sum on beneficial projects.
Middle Eastern countries will have to adapt as the world tilts towards green projects. Green investments can help the region achieve economic growth while maintaining environmental sustainability.